Not So Digital: Film Shortage Hampers British Speed Cameras

There are many advantages and disadvantages of digital technology. One clear advantage digital cameras have over their predecessors is that they don’t require film. Great Britain has more than 6000 speed cameras, but roughly ten percent of them still use good ol’ fashioned film.

So does your hipster brother, or your neighborhood photographer? That’s fine and dandy, but in this instance, it poses a problem for British law enforcement. Thanks to government spending cuts of £38 million ($61.6 million) last summer, many local municipalities decided to turn off their cameras. In anticipation of the lower demand, Fujifilm canceled an order of film from Japan. Now that the decision has been reversed, these very speed cameras need new film — which, apparently, isn’t immediately available thanks to Fuji’s amended production schedule.

In short? A speeder’s holiday of sorts, provided drivers are bold enough to gamble with the chance cameras in their area aren’t digital, and are also out of film.

According to Autocar, two different sources have told them that Fuji’s Gatso film will be in short supply until September, but a Fujifilm spokesman said stock will be back to normal by the end of June.

“It’s just a supply and demand thing,” he said. “We toned down our orders, but the police have been ordering as usual, so we are air-freighting supplies to clear the backlog.”

Source: Autocar