PCC backs initiative to tackle speeding motorists in Sussex

13/11/2014

The commitment of volunteers in Sussex to help catch speeding motorists has been recognised by the county’s Police & Crime Commissioner, Katy Bourne.

A grant of £12,000 from the Commissioner’s Safer in Sussex Community Fund has been awarded to local Community Speed Watch groups to provide additional speed devices in Adur & Worthing, Arun, Crawley, Horsham, Mid Sussex, and Wealden.

These devices are used by Speed Watch volunteers to monitor speeds of passing vehicles with the aim of educating drivers about road safety. Details of vehicles that exceed the speed limit are referred to Sussex Police and a warning letter is sent to the registered owner. Anyone caught speeding a second time is sent a final warning letter and motorists caught three times are contacted directly by the police.

There are currently 91 Speed Watch groups covering over 600 approved sites in Sussex. Each of these is registered to Sussex Police’s Operation Crackdown website – the Force’s public online reporting tool for anti social driving.

So far in 2014, Crackdown has received 22,500 first reports of speeding cars in Sussex on behalf of Community Speed Watch groups. As a result almost 20,000 warning letters have been sent out to motorists.

Crucially, just 8% of those drivers have received repeat letters for a second offence, suggesting that Speed Watch is an effective deterrent for speeding motorists.

Commenting on the scheme Mrs Bourne said: “I know that speeding is a concern for many residents in Sussex, which is why I am delighted to support community-minded groups like Speed Watch who give their time for free to help keep our roads safer.

“The Community Speed Watch initiative is a great example of local people working with the police to help road users share the roads responsibly. Not only has it been shown to act as a deterrent for people exceeding local speed limits, it also enhances the quality of life for local residents.”

Superintendent Jane Derrick, head of Sussex Safer Roads Partnership, said: “I am very grateful to every one of the volunteers who give their time to help make the roads in their community safer.

“Their efforts make a real difference as we and other partners try to bring down average speeds and promote road safety across Sussex.

“These extra devices will allow us to expand the use of Community Speed Watch across the county, giving us the opportunity to intervene in areas where drivers are travelling too fast without relying on safety cameras or officers catching offenders in the act.

“Speeding puts lives at risk and anything we can do to encourage motorists to drive more slowly will make the roads safer for everyone.”

About Community Speed Watch

Trained by Sussex Police, all Community Speed Watch volunteers operate under a police approved code of practice at sites selected by the volunteers and risk-assessed by the police.

Volunteers receive appropriate training and are supported by their neighbourhood policing team.

For further information about becoming a Community Speed Watch volunteer in your area please contact your Neighbourhood Police Team: http://www.sussex.police.uk/help-centre/your-local-district

To find out more about the Police & Crime Commissioner’s Safer in Sussex Fund and how to apply visit: http://www.sussex-pcc.gov.uk/safer-in-sussex-community-fund/.

 

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