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Warwickshire police launch campaign to reduce road accidents involving speed

Warwickshire Police are asking speeding motorists to obey speed limits in a campaign that aims to reduce the number of people killed or seriously injured on Warwickshire’s roads.

The campaign has the hashtag #SlowDownSaveLives and is being rolled out across social media channels.

Speed kills and in Warwickshire despite Covid drastically reducing traffic, between 1st January 2018 and 31st December 2020, 40 people were killed and 317 seriously injured in collisions where speed and/or loss of control was recorded as a contributory factor.

Speeding in residential areas puts lives at risk as pedestrians are four times more likely to die if hit by a vehicle travelling at 40mph than at 30mph.

The risks of being caught are also high, warn police. In Warwickshire, in 2019, 45,783 people were caught speeding in the county and even in 2020 during lockdown with less vehicles on the road 33,640 people were caught speeding in Warwickshire.

Chief Inspector Faz Chishty said: “The role of Warwickshire Police is to help protect people from harm and this includes those who travel on our roads.

“Speed limits are there to protect the public and to assist traffic flow as well as improving the quality of life for local residents. Driving too fast or at an inappropriate speed for the road environment or conditions means that drivers have less time to react and near misses can easily turn into collisions. That is why our officers will actively target those who speed on our county’s roads as well as on our motorway network.”

A police spokesperson advised: “If you are a passenger in a vehicle where the driver is speeding please do not be afraid to ask the driver to slow down. If they challenge you, tell them that 40,000 (30,000 during Covid) people are caught every year in Warwickshire because it is illegal and dangerous, most people do not speed and there is little benefit to speeding. Most of us have been overtaken by a speeding driver only to pull up behind them at the next junction.”

Roadside cameras also play an important role in reducing the numbers killed and seriously injured on Warwickshire’s roads as many speeding offences are dealt with by fixed roadside speed cameras.

An independent national review by the Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents of more than 4,000 safety cameras over a four-year period showed that cameras significantly reduced speeding and commissions and cut deaths and serious injuries at camera sites by 42 per cent.

In a two-week period in June 2020, despite lockdown, 175 speeding offences were detected by officers and 2,689 speeding offences were detected by roadside speed cameras including motorway average speed detections. Officers spoke to an additional 94 drivers and gave them words of advice about their speed.

Speeding drivers who are eligible for and accept a conditional offer of a fixed penalty receive three penalty points and £100 fine. Excessive high speed offences will not get a conditional offer and will be prosecuted via the courts.

Those drivers who admit the offence of speeding and are eligible may be offered the opportunity to attend the National Speed Awareness Course on the effects and dangers of speeding as an alternative to a speeding fine and penalty points. The course is not a way to avoid fines however, you can only attend one speed awareness course every three years.

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