- 1,344 motorists stopped during ‘Operation Haste’
- The operation was launched following complaints to the Police and Crime Commissioner of speeding during lockdown across the county
- More than 600 motorists were given a roadside warning; almost 200 received further punishments
- PCC Martin Surl described the figures as “disappointing but not surprising”
More than one thousand motorists were stopped during a police operation to tackle speeding during the lockdown – and almost three quarters were over the speed limit.
Of those, 178 drivers were either fined, summonsed to go to court or offered a place on a Speed Awareness Course; 672 were given verbal warnings and roadside education on the dangers of speeding.
Police and Crime Commissioner (PCC) Martin Surl said, “These figures come as no surprise as it was clear from the complaints I have received that speeding during lockdown had become a countywide problem.
“It is disappointing that despite all the evidence and warnings of the dangers involved – including warnings beforehand that this operation was taking place – so many drivers think it’s still ok to go over the limit.
“I am pleased we are now able to run speed awareness courses again online and hope those who take advantage will learn the lesson.”
‘Operation Haste’ began with a period of warning and education under the slogan urging motorists to ‘Slow Down, Save Lives’. In common with previous campaigns under the PCC’s Police and Crime Plan priority for ‘Safe and Social Driving, a period of enforcement followed.
The joint operation involved officers from the Constabulary’s Neighbourhood Policing, Roads Policing, Camera Enforcement teams and Special Constabulary. Following complaints from local residents identifying areas where motorists routinely flouted speed limits, police targeted 165 roads in Cheltenham, the Cotswolds, Forest of Dean, Gloucester, Stroud and Tewkesbury.
During the 13 days of enforcement, 1,344 motorists were stopped on suspicion of a variety of motoring offences. :
- 488 motorists were detected by the Camera Enforcement team
- 363 were stopped by the Special Constabulary
- 320 were stopped by roads and armed response officers
- 143 were stopped by neighbourhood officers, and
- 30 were stopped by Force Response Unit officers
Chief Inspector Al Barby said, “National figures show that on average 17 people are killed and 126 are seriously injured every month in the UK when speeding is believed to have been a contributing factor. Our speeding campaign was launched as the easing of lockdown restrictions meant that more drivers were out on the roads of Gloucestershire.
“I am pleased that a majority of residents and road users were compliant with speed limits but where they weren’t we used a balanced approach of education and enforcement to try and change behaviour”.
Driving at speeds above the legal limit, or that is inappropriate for the conditions, is one of the “Fatal Five” key factors that contribute to traffic collisions. Driving within the set limit allows you to stop safely within the distance you can see to be clear. That provides time to react and avoid a collision with another road user.