New A38 average speed cameras to go live soon

Average speed cameras on either side of the Saltash tunnel are expected to go live in the summer following a consultation two years ago.

In July 2022 PlymouthLive reported how National Highways urged people to take part in a public consultation[1] on a potential programme of measures to improve safety along the A38[2] in South East Cornwall.

At the time the agency highlighted how the A38 Trerulefoot to Carkeel Safety Package was one of a number of pipeline schemes which were being developed across the country for consideration by the Government for its third Road Investment Strategy.

The A38 is considered an important route within the South West Peninsula, linking Bodmin to the west and Plymouth and Exeter to the East.

But a higher than national average of collisions between the Trerulefoot and Carkeel roundabouts prompted action to improve safety along this section and proposals included a mixture of average speed cameras, improved road and junction layouts, upgraded bus bays, reduced speed limits, improved signage, lighting and traffic signalling.

The public were asked to take part in the consultation and give feedback on the proposals which was then delivered to National Highway’s report.

In September 2023 PlymouthLive revealed[3] that there would be closures on the A38 and a speed limit reduction as part of the Saltash Tunnel upgrades.

Among the changes was slashing the speed limit from the Tunnel to the Carkeel roundabout with the speed restriction lowered from 70mph to 50mph and with average speed cameras being installed to enforce the 30mph limit through the tunnel and on the B3271 and North Road diversion routes.

At the time Julian Mitchell, National Highways’ Tunnel Manager, told PlymouthLive: “The speed reduction measures are much needed and we see the scheme as part of the overall programme.

“This section of the A38 sees a number of minor collisions as motorists try to reduce speed quickly on the approach to the tunnel and the Carkeel roundabout, and we are aware of vehicles exceeding the speed limit along the B3271 North Road diversion route when we close the tunnel.”

Motorists have shared social media posts about the erection of tall yellow poles, which will carry the average speed cameras, sited at both ends of the tunnel.

The western portal of the A38 Saltash Tunnel
The western portal of the A38 Saltash Tunnel

One driver remarked workers had “been out overnight and put up the average speed camera poles either side of the saltash[4] tunnel. I’m guessing in the next few days they will put up the cameras and the mobile money maker vans will be lurking in the lay-by at the top towards roundabout or on approach to the tunnel.”

A spokesperson for National Highways said the speed limit was now “enforceable between the tunnel and Carkeel roundabout”.

They added: “The cameras will be going in over the next two weeks and will be calibrated by the end of May to early June”. The cameras will effectively be able to go ‘live’ from that point onwards.

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  1. ^ In July 2022 PlymouthLive reported how National Highways urged people to take part in a public consultation (
  2. ^ A38 (
  3. ^ In September 2023 PlymouthLive revealed (
  4. ^ saltash (
  5. ^ Click here (
  6. ^ Privacy Notice. (