Thank you to everyone who has offered feedback on the roll-out of average speed enforcement in Lancashire. Whilst we can't reply to all of your comments individually we'd like to address some of them here.
It is clear that many people, particularly those with local knowledge of the 8 roads, are supportive of this development and agree with the Road Safety Partnership that it provides a real opportunity to reduce casualties, save lives and prevent families from losing loved ones.
Other constructive comments about road safety in general have been raised and whilst it is not possible to respond to everyone personally, we will try and cover the main themes being raised.
A number of people have raised the issue of drivers using their mobile phones and indeed it is recognised locally and nationally as one of the ‘fatal 4’. A variety of methods are used to detect and deal with phone offences, including officer observations and more recently the use of the yellow mobile enforcement vans to detect drivers not only exceeding the speed limit, but also using mobile phones and not wearing seat belts.
We support national campaigns, aimed at education and enforcement for mobile phone offences and local Neighbourhood Police Teams (NHPTs) are encouraged to get involved. We accept that people see motorists in their area blatantly using mobile phones and perceive that they ‘never get stopped’. As with any motoring offence officers cannot be everywhere and day to day are deployed dynamically to ongoing risks and threats arising across the county. We will continue to encourage NHPTs to deal robustly with these offences and if you consider it is a particular problem in your area we encourage you to discuss this with your NHP officers (local contact information can be found on the Constabulary website http://www.lancashire.police.uk). Any locations specifically raised have already been forwarded to these teams. The use of local CCTV to detect offences is impracticable as this would require police officers or staff spending many hours reviewing footage to detect offences. However, we will always consider its use to corroborate offences already detected or suspected.
Enforcement in my area
The scoping of where best to deploy average speed was done using a number of criterion including casualty data, collision data and professional judgement. We will continue to review the possibility of using average speed on other routes in line with emerging collision trends and casualty data.
However before we invest in further average speed on these routes, through the multi-agency speed tasking group, which takes account of collision and speed data along with community concerns, other interventions maybe considered more appropriate. For example, some roads may already have fixed cameras or may benefit from officer and/or camera van enforcement. There may also be opportunities for engineering improvements which could have the desired effect of lowering speeds.
We are permitted to recover reasonable costs associated with the administration of diversionary courses; from this and through good housekeeping and effective and efficient management of our resources we have been able to identify funds to re-invest into road safety. It is only right that these funds are used as part of achieving our vision of ‘Towards Zero Lancashire’; working towards nobody being killed or seriously injured on our roads.