OVER €240,000 has been paid in fines by drivers caught by speed cameras in Abbeyfeale in just two years, according to figures published this week.
This put Abbeyfeale in ninth place in the top 10 “earning spots” nationally between 2012 and 2016.
The figure of €241,560 is, however, an underestimation of the total as it includes just fines for 2014 and 2015.
The number one spot countrywide is taken by the N11 at Johnston, Co. Wicklow, with fines over €594,160.
“I don’t think this will come as a surprise to anyone,” Abbeyfeale councillor Francis Foley said this Wednesday.
The “blackspot” for the speed van, he explained, is at Mountmahon on the eastern approach to the town.
“There is a nice lead-in from the 60kph speed limit and the next thing, all of a sudden, you are into a 50kph zone,” he said.
“I have no problem with speed vans where there is a high incidence of accidents and fatalities,” Cllr Foley continued.
But he is convinced that Mountmahon is not one of those places.
“I would love to see the statistics,” he said. “But I would honestly say the number of accidents there is low.
“I think the figures prove it to be a revenue maker,” Cllr Foley added, pointing out that both he and fellow councillor Liam Galvin had raised the issue several times before this.
Speed cameras have been deployed at 1,031 locations across the country and is operated by the Go-Safe consortium.
The figures show that €27.8m was collected nationally in speeding fines in the past five years, €7.5m of that in 2015 alone.
In the first three months of 2016, the figure reached €4.7m.