Significant investment made into road safety and speeding enforcement
The Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner (OPCC) and Wiltshire Police have made a significant investment into road safety that will see Community Speed Watch (CSW) teams carry out activity that is enforceable in a court of law.
The announcement comes just a month after a survey conducted by the Association of Police and Crime Commissioners (APCC) found that people in Wiltshire wanted to see greater enforcement of road traffic offences.
The £70,000 investment in road safety will see the recruitment of a new Traffic Enforcement Officer andnew speeding enforcement equipment.
CSW uses volunteers to record the speed of drivers through a specific area. This generates a significant amount of community intelligence and this investment will help speed up the processing of the, on average, 40,000 reports per year from the 1000 volunteers across the county.
The new Traffic Enforcement Officer, and camera equipment, will work alongside CSW teams to educate and enforce road safety. An IT solution is also required to manage the significant administration that comes with sending multiple letters out daily.
Police and Crime Commissioner for Wiltshire and Swindon Angus Macpherson said: “The recent survey from the APCC not only showed that our local communitiesdo not feel safe on the roads, but they also feel that not enough is being done to take action against motorists who break the law.
“More than 82%of our residents surveyed either agreed or strongly agreed that they wanted to see greater enforcement of traffic offences.Now, it may be that this is more about people's perceptions of road safety rather than the reality of the situation, but either way, something must be done.
“I have prioritised road safety and I welcome the additional capability that will provide the Force with the systems and technology needed to enhance enforcement of speeding offences, whilst maximising the use of CSW volunteers. This investment is on top of my direct funding for the CSW teams. My office also continues to look at other ways we can further embed the work of CSW in how the police target enforcement action.
“The number of ‘killed and seriously injured’ road traffic collisions have risen in recent years and reducing the harm caused on our roads is an area of priority for the OPCC and the Force”.
Assistant Chief Constable Deb Smith said: “The CSW initiative was setup by the PCC in 2012 to engage local communities in road safety and help to prevent and enforce speeding.
“The volunteers provide significant support to the Force already, but currentlythey do not have the capability of adequately enforcing speeding offences. This investment will enable them to do that in a targeted, intelligence led way alongside our specialist operations and community policing officers.
“The primary reason for this investment is enhancing road safety – particularly in communities that are at increased risk or where repeat offending is present.”