Drivers face crackdown after ministers announce major shake-up of roads policing with increase in tr
Ministers have announced plans for a major overhaul of roads policing in a bid to crackdown on dangerous drivers.
In a response to concerns over the dearth of police numbers on the UK's roads, and an over-reliance on speed cameras, ministers have now ordered a joint review of roads policing and traffic enforcement.
One of the major concerns highlighted has been the way in which some motorists have been able to get away with irresponsible and dangerous driving, with seemingly no recourse of action.
Another concern which has been highlighted in the Daily Mail is the failure to bring down road casualty numbers, which have remained high since 2010, with deaths caused through drink driving rising.
Motoring campaign groups have warned that the lack of a visible "traffic-cop" presence is giving some motorists the impression that they can get away with major driving offences at will.
As a result, a two year review will be undertaken, funded by both the Department for Transport and Highways England. The review will be launched later this year.
The review will collate feedback from the Home Office and the National Police Chiefs’ Council, in a bid to identify both the positives and the negatives from within the police service in relation to roads policing. It will also identify the many different ways in which police can use new technology to catch offenders.
This technology may include long-range cameras which can photograph and video motorists speeding, using their phone while driving, and tailgating from more than half a mile away. The RAC have stated that a decline in road traffic policing may be contributing to a rise in drivers being caught using hand-held devices behind the wheel.
Part of the review will look at whether to merge regional police forces, operating on a similar basis to the British Transport Police, forming a single unit so they can police the roads more effectively.
With the number of traffic police officers falling from 7,104 in 2005 to just 4,356 in 2014, it is generally believed that more officers undertaking road patrols could stem the tide of motoring crime.