Call for motorway cameras to catch out litter louts

Motorway cameras should be used to catch litter louts as well as dangerous drivers, a former transport minister will say this week. Sir Mike Penning thinks rubbish strewn along the roadside is a “national disgrace” and wants those responsible prosecuted.

And the MP for Hemel Hempstead, who will raise the issue in Parliament, believes National Highways is failing in its duty to keep roads free of rubbish.

Sir Mike said: “Some of our motorways go through the most beautiful parts of the country. It is like driving through a rubbish tip.”

He said images from cameras could be used to fine those responsible, adding: “We have the technology to prosecute and we’re not doing it.”

And he believes there should be heavier penalties for litter louts to act as a deterrent.

The RAC Foundation fears the nation is approaching a “point of no return” when uncollected litter will become embedded in the landscape.

Steve Gooding, director of the RAC Foundation, said: “In 1,000 years, we risk archaeologists digging up the past and identifying the 21st-century road network not by the buried tarmac but by the lines of litter that bordered it.”

Freda Rashdi, of National Highways, said: “Littering is a social problem and we’re working hard to tackle it on our roads.

“It includes using CCTV in A-road lay-bys to gather evidence to provide to local authorities, who can carry out enforcement.

“We’re also carrying out a trial to understand how message signs resonate with drivers to reduce motorway littering.”

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