Police Federation calls for probe into increase in North Yorkshire road deaths

Police Federation calls for probe into increase in North Yorkshire road deaths

Police Federation calls for probe into increase in North Yorkshire road deaths

First published in News
Last updated

THE North Yorkshire Police Federation has urged police to prove falling officer numbers were not behind an increase in deaths on the county's roads.

The Press reported this week that 51 people died on North Yorkshire's roads last year, an increase of 60 per cent on 2012, with a major increase in motorcycle fatalities, which more than trebled from five in 2012 to 16 last year.

Mark Botham, chairman of the North Yorkshire Police Federation, said the number of fatalities in the 12 month period was the highest in almost a decade, and visitors to the county are constantly increasing, while the numbers of officers on the road were dropping.

He said: "I would look to the force to provide us with transparent data to reassure that cuts are not having the impact of increasing deaths and injuries on the roads.”

Deputy Chief Constable Tim Madgwick chairs the 95 Alive road safety partnership, and aknowledged the force had to make "some difficult decisions" following the Government's funding changes, but what money the force had was being invested in the specialist Major Collision Investigation Team, mobile safety cameras and Automatic Number Plate Recognition technology.

He said: “That said, we are committed to maintaining the number of front line police officers in the future, despite further savings which need to be made over the coming years.

“However, police enforcement is just one aspect of road safety. Education and changing behaviour is key to keeping all road users safe and the police can’t do it alone. There is extensive work taking place in partnership with other agencies who make up the “95 Alive” road safety partnership who provide a vital service in educating and informing motorists thorough a range of campaigns and initiatives.”

Comments (12)

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10:32am Mon 28 Apr 14

CommonSense!! says...

"Safety" cameras are obviously not working, their presence has increased markedly as road deaths increase substantially. It is a nice earner, but doesn't achieve anything other than alienating the public and reducing confidence in the police.

This is a real shame when officers on the ground work so hard in difficult circumstances and do their best, only to have the public turning against them due to cynical money making exercises like siting camera vans on wide open well-sighted dual carriageways.

Put real police officers back in marked police cars and you will stem the rising tide of road deaths in the county. Persist in this silly, short-sighted campaign against motorists and the rise will continue.
"Safety" cameras are obviously not working, their presence has increased markedly as road deaths increase substantially. It is a nice earner, but doesn't achieve anything other than alienating the public and reducing confidence in the police. This is a real shame when officers on the ground work so hard in difficult circumstances and do their best, only to have the public turning against them due to cynical money making exercises like siting camera vans on wide open well-sighted dual carriageways. Put real police officers back in marked police cars and you will stem the rising tide of road deaths in the county. Persist in this silly, short-sighted campaign against motorists and the rise will continue. CommonSense!!
  • Score: 22

11:18am Mon 28 Apr 14

The Great Buda says...

CommonSense!! wrote:
"Safety" cameras are obviously not working, their presence has increased markedly as road deaths increase substantially. It is a nice earner, but doesn't achieve anything other than alienating the public and reducing confidence in the police.

This is a real shame when officers on the ground work so hard in difficult circumstances and do their best, only to have the public turning against them due to cynical money making exercises like siting camera vans on wide open well-sighted dual carriageways.

Put real police officers back in marked police cars and you will stem the rising tide of road deaths in the county. Persist in this silly, short-sighted campaign against motorists and the rise will continue.
Agreed. Get the cash-cows off the roads, and more police on them.
[quote][p][bold]CommonSense!![/bold] wrote: "Safety" cameras are obviously not working, their presence has increased markedly as road deaths increase substantially. It is a nice earner, but doesn't achieve anything other than alienating the public and reducing confidence in the police. This is a real shame when officers on the ground work so hard in difficult circumstances and do their best, only to have the public turning against them due to cynical money making exercises like siting camera vans on wide open well-sighted dual carriageways. Put real police officers back in marked police cars and you will stem the rising tide of road deaths in the county. Persist in this silly, short-sighted campaign against motorists and the rise will continue.[/p][/quote]Agreed. Get the cash-cows off the roads, and more police on them. The Great Buda
  • Score: 16

11:57am Mon 28 Apr 14

ian923 says...

Traffic Division was severely cut some time ago and you rarely see a proper traffic patrol car nowadays. The Federation represent the cops who should be visible on the streets and roads to curb motorists driving behaviour. Instead they are sat in offices on computers. This is an issue the Fed should be bleating about.
Traffic Division was severely cut some time ago and you rarely see a proper traffic patrol car nowadays. The Federation represent the cops who should be visible on the streets and roads to curb motorists driving behaviour. Instead they are sat in offices on computers. This is an issue the Fed should be bleating about. ian923
  • Score: 9

4:13pm Mon 28 Apr 14

Idris Gawr says...

It is not rocket , bobbies!
There are far too many reckless drivers on our roads.
Beef up the Traffic Division NOW to stop the carnage on our roads.
To the magistrates/judges: up hold the laws and send dangerous off our roads.
It is not rocket , bobbies! There are far too many reckless drivers on our roads. Beef up the Traffic Division NOW to stop the carnage on our roads. To the magistrates/judges: up hold the laws and send dangerous off our roads. Idris Gawr
  • Score: 4

4:27pm Mon 28 Apr 14

bringbackcommonsense says...

".....money the force had was being invested in the specialist Major Collision Investigation Team....." . I too use this logic on my farm; I am investing heavily into ways of rounding up my horses after they have escaped the unbolted stable!

SCAMERAS detect those that exceed arbitrary and often too low speed limits. Let us get away from the SPEED KILLS mantra that is thrust at us day in and day out and realise that it is INAPPROPRIATE SPEED that is the danger and that this is not always higher than the posted limit. SCAMERAS DO NOT detect illegal mobile phone use, drunk drivers, drugged drivers, unlicenced drivers, bald tyres, dodgy brakes, unfit vehicles...etc the list is practically endless. Less reliance on automation and more reliance on good old police patrols is the way ahead and if the police cannot see this then we are all on our way to hell in an unlicenced hand-cart.
".....money the force had was being invested in the specialist Major Collision Investigation Team....." . I too use this logic on my farm; I am investing heavily into ways of rounding up my horses after they have escaped the unbolted stable! SCAMERAS detect those that exceed arbitrary and often too low speed limits. Let us get away from the SPEED KILLS mantra that is thrust at us day in and day out and realise that it is INAPPROPRIATE SPEED that is the danger and that this is not always higher than the posted limit. SCAMERAS DO NOT detect illegal mobile phone use, drunk drivers, drugged drivers, unlicenced drivers, bald tyres, dodgy brakes, unfit vehicles...etc the list is practically endless. Less reliance on automation and more reliance on good old police patrols is the way ahead and if the police cannot see this then we are all on our way to hell in an unlicenced hand-cart. bringbackcommonsense
  • Score: 6

8:17pm Mon 28 Apr 14

Right Turn Clyde says...

The long term trend is fewer lives are being lost on the roads, which is no bad thing. The figure for motorcycles casualties is also decreasing - the deaths in 2012 in North Yorkshire of 5 was an anomaly, and statistically irrelevant. Not for the people involved, granted, but 29 million vehicles with 65 million people is going to create a certain amount of motoring friction.

Driving, motorcycling, scuba diving, horse riding, parachuting, etc, etc, etc, can never be risk free, so next bank holiday let's give it all up and have a BBQ with alcohol, a few cigs, fat filled charred food and sunburn. On second thoughts... where's my leathers?
The long term trend is fewer lives are being lost on the roads, which is no bad thing. The figure for motorcycles casualties is also decreasing - the deaths in 2012 in North Yorkshire of 5 was an anomaly, and statistically irrelevant. Not for the people involved, granted, but 29 million vehicles with 65 million people is going to create a certain amount of motoring friction. Driving, motorcycling, scuba diving, horse riding, parachuting, etc, etc, etc, can never be risk free, so next bank holiday let's give it all up and have a BBQ with alcohol, a few cigs, fat filled charred food and sunburn. On second thoughts... where's my leathers? Right Turn Clyde
  • Score: 1

9:52pm Mon 28 Apr 14

york_chap says...

The massively expensive "20's plenty" rubbish and the snazzy new "safety" camera vans are working a treat then.

"But what money the force had....was being invested in mobile safety cameras".

Please, please stop throwing the money you do have at pointless schemes in areas where there aren't notable numbers of deaths. I'm sure pretty much every sensible road user in the county would rather that money was being spent on providing traffic officers who can cover a wide area and spot/punish all kinds of dangers that the stationary speed cameras are oblivious to. Officers can also educate drivers on the spot.

The trio of 4x4's I saw repeatedly overtaking on solid white lines on blind bends/hills on the A59 are NOT going to be deterred by a camera van on the Malton bypass, presumably manned by some fat bloke eating a pie.
The massively expensive "20's plenty" rubbish and the snazzy new "safety" camera vans are working a treat then. "But what money the force had....was being invested in mobile safety cameras". Please, please stop throwing the money you do have at pointless schemes in areas where there aren't notable numbers of deaths. I'm sure pretty much every sensible road user in the county would rather that money was being spent on providing traffic officers who can cover a wide area and spot/punish all kinds of dangers that the stationary speed cameras are oblivious to. Officers can also educate drivers on the spot. The trio of 4x4's I saw repeatedly overtaking on solid white lines on blind bends/hills on the A59 are NOT going to be deterred by a camera van on the Malton bypass, presumably manned by some fat bloke eating a pie. york_chap
  • Score: 4

9:04am Tue 29 Apr 14

yorkshirelad says...

Yes - the Police Federation are right to push this. It seems that very few road laws are ever enforced these days except as part of a 'campaign' or after a tragic event.

However...beware the bandwagon characterised by the use of the terms 'revenue', 'cash cow', 'scamera' often with the liberal use of shouty capitals. These people calling for the return to good old-fashioned policing are not really concerned with road safety but in reality want the cameras gone for one reason only - so they can break the speed limit when and where they please with less risk of getting caught.

Given the vast scale of speeding, it would never be possible to realistically police it manually and speed cameras are both accepted by the public and proven to reduce casualties in the specific locations they operate.

The better solution would be maintaining speed camera vans (though I think they would have a much better deterrent effect if they were randomly placed, unmarked and operated 24/7) but also have an increased police patrol presence on our roads catching some of the people texting, overtaking dangerously, tailgating etc etc - seen every day.

In cash-strapped times, why not fund these patrols with fines paid by people caught speeding by the vans? It's surely better than other taxpayers funding it if they already drive within the law.

These deaths are a tragedy and all decent people will back the Police in trying to reduce them by whatever operational methods they choose.
Yes - the Police Federation are right to push this. It seems that very few road laws are ever enforced these days except as part of a 'campaign' or after a tragic event. However...beware the bandwagon characterised by the use of the terms 'revenue', 'cash cow', 'scamera' often with the liberal use of shouty capitals. These people calling for the return to good old-fashioned policing are not really concerned with road safety but in reality want the cameras gone for one reason only - so they can break the speed limit when and where they please with less risk of getting caught. Given the vast scale of speeding, it would never be possible to realistically police it manually and speed cameras are both accepted by the public and proven to reduce casualties in the specific locations they operate. The better solution would be maintaining speed camera vans (though I think they would have a much better deterrent effect if they were randomly placed, unmarked and operated 24/7) but also have an increased police patrol presence on our roads catching some of the people texting, overtaking dangerously, tailgating etc etc - seen every day. In cash-strapped times, why not fund these patrols with fines paid by people caught speeding by the vans? It's surely better than other taxpayers funding it if they already drive within the law. These deaths are a tragedy and all decent people will back the Police in trying to reduce them by whatever operational methods they choose. yorkshirelad
  • Score: 0

9:55am Tue 29 Apr 14

bringbackcommonsense says...

Sorry Yorkshirelad but to say that those calling for the removal of SCAMERAS ( note liberal use of shouty capitals) are not not concerned with road safety is short-sighted and wrong. Certainly my opinions are clearly in favour of road safety. All these devices do is affect very localised areas and target just a small minority of potentially dangerous driving behaviour.

There are many factors that need to be addressed and the focus needs to be taken away from the pure speed element, this can only be achieved by more police patrols. Oh, and funding police with revenue from cameras is a bad idea; if insufficient revenue is brought in by the cameras then all that will happen is the speed limit will be reduced further to bolster the income.
Sorry Yorkshirelad but to say that those calling for the removal of SCAMERAS ( note liberal use of shouty capitals) are not not concerned with road safety is short-sighted and wrong. Certainly my opinions are clearly in favour of road safety. All these devices do is affect very localised areas and target just a small minority of potentially dangerous driving behaviour. There are many factors that need to be addressed and the focus needs to be taken away from the pure speed element, this can only be achieved by more police patrols. Oh, and funding police with revenue from cameras is a bad idea; if insufficient revenue is brought in by the cameras then all that will happen is the speed limit will be reduced further to bolster the income. bringbackcommonsense
  • Score: 0

10:33am Tue 29 Apr 14

yorkshirelad says...

They catch people breaking a law everyone learns about (driving test), is clearly signposted, in clearly marked vans, is advance advertised in The Press, allow an educational course for first-time offenders (in 3 years) rather than a conviction, allow a margin of error...

Not sure I get the 'scam' bit...

Whether you agree with camera enforcement or not, a 'scam' it ain't.
They catch people breaking a law everyone learns about (driving test), is clearly signposted, in clearly marked vans, is advance advertised in The Press, allow an educational course for first-time offenders (in 3 years) rather than a conviction, allow a margin of error... Not sure I get the 'scam' bit... Whether you agree with camera enforcement or not, a 'scam' it ain't. yorkshirelad
  • Score: 0

10:35am Tue 29 Apr 14

CommonSense!! says...

You only need to look at the casualty figures for last year to see the obsession with sitting in a van at the side of wide open roads such as the A64 isn't working and is diverting funds that could be spent on proper policing.
You only need to look at the casualty figures for last year to see the obsession with sitting in a van at the side of wide open roads such as the A64 isn't working and is diverting funds that could be spent on proper policing. CommonSense!!
  • Score: 1

12:50pm Tue 29 Apr 14

bringbackcommonsense says...

Perfectly safe 60mph road + newly imposed 40mph limit + camera = money making scam. A simple, yet lucrative, formula for making money and has absolutely nothing at all to do with making the road any safer. At best it will reduce the average speed by a few mph for a few 100yds.

One of the greatest hazards I see developing on our roads is caused by vehicle specific speed limits. Lorries at 40 mph, vans at 50mph and cars at 60mph. It doesn't take a genius to see that the faster vehicles will bunch up to the slower ones thus creating a problem. Vans will then overtake the lorries (a perfectly legal manoeuvre) and the cars likewise. Net result is more vehicles spending more time on the wrong side of the road. How the hell can that be considered in the interest of safety? Cameras won't detect the drivers that carry out the overtake without the requisite skill and care but traffic police will and then be able to offer advice or issue a penalty. Better still, reassess the vehicle specific limits.
Perfectly safe 60mph road + newly imposed 40mph limit + camera = money making scam. A simple, yet lucrative, formula for making money and has absolutely nothing at all to do with making the road any safer. At best it will reduce the average speed by a few mph for a few 100yds. One of the greatest hazards I see developing on our roads is caused by vehicle specific speed limits. Lorries at 40 mph, vans at 50mph and cars at 60mph. It doesn't take a genius to see that the faster vehicles will bunch up to the slower ones thus creating a problem. Vans will then overtake the lorries (a perfectly legal manoeuvre) and the cars likewise. Net result is more vehicles spending more time on the wrong side of the road. How the hell can that be considered in the interest of safety? Cameras won't detect the drivers that carry out the overtake without the requisite skill and care but traffic police will and then be able to offer advice or issue a penalty. Better still, reassess the vehicle specific limits. bringbackcommonsense
  • Score: 1

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