SIX new mobile speed cameras will be positioned around rural areas of North Yorkshire.

Police and Crime Commissioner Julia Mulligan announced the new vehicles will be more suited to rural locations than the current mobile safety cameras, and will be funded from the £1m paid by speeding drivers and the Highways Agency last year.

The new vans will use Automatic Number Plate Recognition technology (ANPR), and will be smaller than the vans currently in use, meaning they can park in areas the current vans cannot.

Deputy Chief Constable Tim Madgwick, chair of 95 Alive Road Safety Partnership, said: "We have fortunately seen the number of fatalities and casualties on our roads reduce in the past year and the new additions to the safety camera fleet will help us to reduce these numbers further.

"The fact we can extend the reassurance of the safety cameras to the more rural communities of our region is great news. With the smaller vans being able to be deployed to those more remote areas and equipped with ANPR capability, not only can we increase the safety of those rural routes we can police our borders more effectively against cross border crime and successfully protect those more vulnerable due to their location, from travelling criminals."

The announcement coincides with the release of the first report into the use of mobile safety cameras in North Yorkshire, which found the vans cost £886,000 last year, processed 40,377 road safety violations - the equivalent of 11 for every hour they operated - and led to 34,419 motorists attending speed awareness courses.

Mrs Mulligan said: "The issue most often raised with me is road safety, particularly speeding through villages and other local communities. These new vehicles will mean we can better improve road safety, continue to see the numbers of people hurt or killed reduce and support even more communities who have road safety concerns.

"Given the scale of the road network in North Yorkshire and the still too many people who die on our roads, as well as those drivers causing misery to others, I am very pleased to be able to invest in this important area of education and enforcement."