Speeding traffic is a regular concern for communities across Thames Valley and a pilot scheme that has been announced today (18/3) is set to help tackle the problem.
Following a new partnership with Community Speedwatch UK, a not-for-profit social enterprise that provides support for speedwatching schemes, Thames Valley will be taking a major step forward in the fight to improve road safety and speeding traffic.
Today (18/3), Thames Valley announced a new pilot scheme which includes new support and training for community speedwatch volunteers.
Organised by the Office of the Police & Crime Commissioner, speedwatch groups will be provided with a starter kit on a loan basis, including a speed detection device, to help volunteers to assist in the battle against speeding motorists.
Before community teams can be deployed to the roadside, they will undergo a number of training sessions both online and at the roadside. They will also need to complete risk assessments.
The new online platform allows group-related activities to be self-regulated using an online calendar and also provides vehicle make recognition training.
DVLA pre-checks logged registration numbers for authenticity before automatically passing data on to the police for further processing.
Matthew Barber, Deputy Police and Crime Commissioner for Thames Valley, said: “I’m really excited about this new scheme and the additional support that we can provide to volunteers. Cutting speeding across Thames Valley can save lives and a strong community-led speedwatch scheme can make a real difference.
“Not only will the new scheme provide better backing for volunteers, comprehensive training, and new equipment, but it will also feed information directly into the police.
“Persistent offenders and hotspot locations can then be followed up for police enforcement. Together we can make our streets safer.”
PC Lee Turnham, Thames Valley Police Community Speedwatch Co-ordinator, said: “Speedwatch has proven in the past to be a deterrent. People drive slower through areas as a result of community speed watch initiatives. The new platform will hopefully provide a community-led approach to reducing excess speed, allowing activity to be community driven.
“This exciting collaboration with Community Speedwatch Online will aim to reduce speed and make our roads safer within Thames Valley."
A six month trial will take place in pre-selected locations first in order to test the new online platform and get feedback from volunteers.
If successful the new scheme, including the loan of equipment will be rolled out to new and existing groups towards the end of 2021.
Existing Community Speedwatch groups will be contact directly about restarting and resuming previous activity once coronavirus restrictions allow.