Over 4000 motorists caught speeding during lockdown in the Northumbria area in less than a month

A national policing operation to crackdown on speeding drivers concluded last weekend – with more than 4,000 motorists caught breaking the speed limit within the Northumbria area.

Over the last three weeks Northumbria Police joined forces across the country in supporting a speeding operation led by the National Police Chief’s Council (NPCC).

It has seen an increase in the deployment of mobile speed camera vans, targeted patrols by traffic officers and volunteer Special Constables carrying out dedicated operations.

The operation was launched as the quieter roads during lockdown had seen an increase in speeding, with the average speed of motorists in the Northumbria region 4mph higher than prior to lockdown.

It concluded at the weekend, and this week the Force has revealed that a total of 4,112 motorists were caught breaking the limit – and ultimately putting their lives and those of others at risk.

That included a number of examples of excessive speed with the worst offender clocked at 101mph on the 70mph stretch of the A696 in Northumberland.

Other speeders of note included someone driving at 105mph on the 50mph section of the A1 in Gateshead and someone travelling at 82mph on the 30mph stretch of Barrack Road in Newcastle.

Chief Inspector Sam Rennison, of Northumbria Police’s Motor Patrols Department, has said that enforcement of speeding will remain a priority.

“The vast majority of motorists on our region’s roads have driven within the limit and behaved responsibly but 4,000 speeders is a considerable number,” said Chief Insp Rennison.

“Some of the figures I have seen over the past three weeks are truly shocking and those extreme examples of speeding will result in a court appearance for the driver.

“This operation has shown just how important it is to enforce speeding during lockdown so that we can continue to ensure the roads are a safe place for everyone.

“More and more people have been carrying out daily exercise by walking or taking to their bicycle for example and they are being put at additional risk if people are travelling at two or three times the limit.

“We know how devastating it can be for families if they lose loved one as a result of speeding – it is our officers who have to knock on the door and deliver that life-changing news.

“That is why I want to reassure our communities that we will be continuing to enforce speeding across our Force area.

“I also want to take the opportunity to thank all the officers, and in particular the volunteer Special Constables, who have assisted with our activity over the past three weeks.”

The NPCC speeding operation was launched on Monday, 18 May, and involved increased enforcement activity that lasted until 7 June.

Other incidents of speeding include someone travelling at 75mph on the 30mph King George Road in South Shields and a panel van travelling at 89mph on the A1 Felton Bypass when such vehicles are restricted to 60mph on that stretch of road.

A motorist was also caught travelling at 96mph on the 50mph A690 and another driver was stopped travelling at 59mph on the 30mph Leechmere Road in Sunderland.

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