Speeding drivers the target of police road safety campaign

St Helens Star: Speeding drivers the target of police road safety campaign Speeding drivers the target of police road safety campaign

SPEEDING motorists will be targeted in a month-long campaign by police after officers revealed drivers who go too fast are causing thousands of crashes on the region's roads.

Last year 50,428 drivers were caught speeding in Merseyside. According to police, this coincides with a rise in the number of people killed and seriously injured.

In 2013, 550 people were seriously injured and 24 people died as a result of collisions in Merseyside. The previous year, 548 people were seriously injured and 20 were killed.

Sgt Paul Mountford, from the Matrix Serious and Organised Crime (MSOC) Roads Policing Department, said: "Speeding drivers are causing or contributing to thousands of collisions resulting in death, injury and misery to many thousands of Merseyside people.

"However, I believe that these statistics don't reflect the full picture. The number of drivers actually caught speeding is only a fraction of those who regularly ignore the speed limits on our roads.

"We are targeting these drivers this month and urging them to think outside of their box when they are driving and consider other vulnerable road users such as pedestrians and cyclists."

Officers will be making roadside speed checks and stopping drivers who are exceeding the limit.

Sgt Mountford added: "A speed limit is not a target to aim for. It is often unsafe to drive at a speed limit for many reasons – schools, parked vehicles, pedestrians, the weather and road conditions to name a few. Our officers will show zero tolerance towards drivers who place others at risk.”

Drivers caught speeding are in some cases offered the option of paying a £100 fine and having three points added to their licence or going on a speed awareness course.

Last year 20,000 drivers attended speed awareness courses to educate and reduce their re-offending.

Merseyside Police has a community speedwatch scheme running in several areas. It sees residents encouraged to join officers to reduce speeds.

Merseyside Police also works with local authorities and driving instructors on the ENGAGE driver training scheme, which aims to educate novice drivers about the common factors that cause crashes including speed choices.

Chief Inspector John Hogan, Head of Roads Policing, added: "We are putting a huge amount of effort in to make Merseyside a safer place for pedestrians, cyclists and motorists."

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