Joint policing operation highlights driving offences on M1
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More than 100 drivers were stopped on the M1 last week (January 24-28), as part of a joint policing operation in Northamptonshire and Leicestershire to crackdown on poor driving on the motorway.
Officers from the Force’s Safer Roads Team joined colleagues from Leicestershire Police used an unmarked HGV to patrol between junctions 16 and 22 of the M1 to spot driving offences.
The patrols were carried out over five days as part of National Highway’s Operation Tramline, and the continued commitment of both forces to reduce the number of people killed or seriously injured on the motorway network.
Officers used the unmarked HGV to film evidence of unsafe driving behaviour by pulling alongside vehicles. Drivers seen committing an offence were then stopped by an unmarked police car following a short distance behind.
From these checks, a total of 105 offences were detected across both counties – 79 in Northamptonshire and 26 in Leicestershire – the majority of which were for not wearing a seatbelt with 45 and 10 respectively.
A further 15 drivers (10 Northamptonshire and five Leicestershire) were stopped for using a mobile phone while driving and nine others (six Northamptonshire and three Leicestershire) were considered not to be in proper control of their vehicle.
Two vehicles were seized for no insurance and two drivers were issued with words of advice – one apiece in both counties – while a further 15 motorists were stopped for other offences including watching videos while driving.
Those flouting the law have been reported for the offences and will be offered the opportunity to take an online education course if eligible, receive a fixed penalty fine or if preferred, the option to go to court.
PC Dave Lee, of Northamptonshire Police’s Safer Roads Team, said: “Reducing the number of people killed or seriously injured on our roads remains our priority, and so it is always disappointing to witness drivers breaking the law.
“As a result of Operation Tramline, the chances of getting caught have increased, which can only be a good thing, and will hopefully encourage those who continue to put lives in danger, to re-consider their driving behaviour.
“To hold a driving licence is a privilege and a responsibility, especially those driving commercial vehicles, and we will continue to work with our partners to take a strong and robust approach to improve road safety.”
Sergeant Steve Jackson, from Leicestershire Police’s Roads Policing Unit (RPU) said: “We worked – and will continue to work – with our colleagues from Northamptonshire Police and National Highways to improve road safety across Leicester, Leicestershire and Rutland.
“The HGV is a useful tool provided to us by National Highways to improve road safety across the board. It allows us to identify more offences being committed and deal with those responsible robustly.
“Ultimately, our aim is to take action in order to reduce the number of casualties on our roads.”
National Highways Assistant Regional Safety Co-ordinator, Marie Biddulph, said: “We believe nobody should be harmed while travelling or working on our network and work tirelessly with our police partners to try to achieve that goal.
“Through Operation Tramline, we want to make our roads are as safe as they can be by making people think twice about their driving behaviour.
“We want that small minority of people who continue to flout the law to know that officers patrolling in our unmarked HGV can spot them whether they are on the phone, not wearing a seatbelt or committing any other offence that puts both themselves and others at risk.”