Roadside Unit Installation

Roadside units have been designed to be easy to install in 3 simple steps:

  1. Serial Number
  2. Fitting
  3. Registration/Activation

Serial Number

Before you start, make a note of the Roadside Unit serial number.  This unique code can be found on the label on the rear of your roadside unit.  You'll need this number to be able to register and activate the unit.


Site location

Typical installation

Selection of where to install the monitoring unit is crucial to the successful operation of AutoSpeedWatch.  Please follow this guidance carefully before deciding the best location. 

The area being monitored should have “implied consent” warning signs for compliance with Surveillance Camera Commissioner guidelines (even though the police say there is no requirement for speed camera signs).  We recommend the use of our AutoSpeedWatch signs to meet the guidelines (they also help reduce speeds); see our section on UK law for details.   You should follow the SCC guidelines and complete a Privacy Impact Assessment for each location you install.  We provide downloadable templates when you purchase a unit.

You should have the permission of the owner/local council and/or the Highways Agency, for attaching the unit to any roadside furniture/poles/etc.   The unit needs to be placed as close as possible to the carriageway without causing a strike hazard to vehicles, pedestrians, or other road users, and should be less than 4m from the centre of the lane being monitored.  If mounted on or near a pedestrian footpath ensure that the monitoring box is placed to prevent injury to people passing (at a height of 2.2m or more).  It should also be at least 60m from a change of speed boundary, and have at least 40 metres line-of-sight visibility of the traffic, both before and after.  The road should be straight (although a slight curve to the right is also ok).  Check that foliage will not obscure its view as it grows.  It must be mounted so that the top of the unit is horizontal. 

The unit requires a good view of the sky to recharge with the solar panel in direct sunlight.  The installation position should therefore be free of overhanging bushes or trees, or any building, structure or other object that might shade sunlight reaching the top of the unit.  Think about how the sun tracks across the sky and how the unit will receive light.  The unit also needs to communicate over any mobile phone network, and should not be in an area of poor/nil coverage.

The unit is typically mounted to a existing road sign pole, but can be any sturdy static structure away from combustible items (the battery technology used has a small but inherent risk of thermal runaway if damaged/misused).  The units need to be permanent installations, and should not be re-located.

How to install

You must carefully assess the installation for risks and mitigate any risks to ensure you, and others, remain safe.  Do not work at height.  Have someone with you with a mobile phone.  Wear high visibility jackets.  Warn traffic as necessary.  Follow the guidance and work practices given by the Health and Safety Executive.  

If the location is designed for pedestrian access (i.e. a pavement, pathway, etc) and is protected from traffic by a kerb or barrier, then you should be able to self-install with due care.  You must comply with the Safety at Street Works and Road Works codes of practice.  If the location is not protected (such as a verge) then you will need 'Chapter 8' competencies for working near a roadway, or employ someone who is Chapter 8 qualified

A special security bit and hex spanner are used on the fixing band to attach the unit.  See video.

  1. Feed the fixing band though the rectangular slot on the unit.  
  2. Position the unit against the pole with the camera window facing away from oncoming traffic (i.e. to the rear of traffic that has passed), and tighten the fixing to just hold the unit in place.
  3. Swivel the unit on the pole so that the arrow on the base of the unit aligns with the centre of the lane being monitored  15m after the unit.   From 1 June 2022 units are supplied with the optional "Easy Align" feature:
    • Switch off your device's mobile data, and switch on it's WiFi.
    • With the unit loosely fixed, swipe the Restart Tool over the centre of the base once, going from mounting bracket to road-side edge.  This resets the unit.
    • Go to your smartphone's WiFi settings and select the WiFi SSID called "AutoSpeedWatch".  Do this within 2 mins.
    • Using a browser, enter the following directly into the address bar (don't use a search engine):, and press Return. 
    • Follow the instructions on your smartphone screen.
  4. Gently tighten the fixing band – just until the unit is firm.  Do not over-tighten the fixing, as this WILL damage the case. Check that the unit is securely attached. 
  5. Note of the exact GPS coordinates of the unit (Google maps is good for this).
  6. Note of the distance from the centre of the carriageway to the unit (see green line on “Typical Installation” picture above).

Installed!  - now register your unit....


Registration/Activation should be done by your community speedwatch coordinator.  They can subsequently invite volunteers from their community speedwatch group to help with the data produced.

If this is the first roadside unit you've installed, please register and activate your roadside unit now.  We will then configure, wake, and enable the unit, and send you login details for your account.  If this is not the first unit you've installed then you can activate it from your My AutoSpeedWatch account.  

You may need to adjust the alignment of the unit after receiving the first images.....The images should be pointing well down the carriageway and not across it.  As below.....