Compulsory spy-in-the-car system bad for road safety

Daniel Dalton MEP, Conservative spokesman on consumer protection, along with other Conservative MEPs, has opposed EU legislation which would force all cars to include controversial satellite-tracking technology that broadcasts a locator signal in the event of an accident. They opposed the measure as expensive, authoritarian and potentially counter-productive.

The legislation, debated in the European parliament this week, would pave the way for the compulsory inclusion in all new cars of the "eCall" system, developed and marketed by BMW.

Motorists would be prevented from switching the technology on and off and it is expected to add in the region of £100 to the cost of a car. Countries would also be obliged to invest heavily in new infrastructure to monitor the system.

Mr Dalton commented:

"Of course we support road safety, but this system won't stop any accidents and will be hugely costly. That does nothing to promote safety."

"We support a voluntary system - but not the mandatory one. People should be able to choose whether they allow a satellite to track their every movement." 

"While it is put forward on this occasion on road safety grounds we fear it could be the thin end of the wedge. How long before we get calls for it to constantly record a car's position and to calculate speed and driving standards?"

 Photo: © European Union 2015 - EP