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17th Sep, 2021

West Merica Police area second highest area in the country for motorists using dash cam footage to report dangerous driving

Tristan Harris 31st Jan, 2021 Updated: 31st Jan, 2021

MORE than 4,000 dangerous driving incidents have been reported across the West Mercia Police force area by motorists submitting dash cam footage.

The figures, from dash cam manufacturer, found the area was the second highest for the tip-offs, bettered only by West Midlands Police which had over 7,000.

The films were uploaded to the National Dash Cam Safety Portal (NDCSP), which enables the public to help their local force clamp down on road offences.

Of the 4,000 pieces of footage submitted, just over 90 per cent were followed up with action – 10 per cent were either out of the force area or no offence was detected.

West Mercia sent out 2,684 warning letters and 983 driver awareness courses have been completed from the evidence, 187 fixed penalty notices have been enforced and 209 court summons have been issued with some cases still pending.

Insp Lloyd Creswell, from the West Mercia Roads Policing Team, said it would be continuing to back the system throughout 2021.

“’Operation Snap’ has been complementing the work already being done by police officers on our road network for over two years now and the natural step forward is to work to ensure the wider general public are aware of the initiative and how to use it.”

He added the scheme enabled the force to raise awareness that drivers’ behaviour could and would be called to account at any time.

“People take risks on the road through fear of not getting caught and a lack of consequence.

“Operation Snap is an initiative that can be used by all road users -drivers, cyclists, pedestrians, horse riders and motorcyclists.

“I am confident that with the help of other road users, new technology will deter people from making poor choices on the road and help make our roads safer for all.”

To promote the scheme further West Mercia Police are now spreading the word by working with the local highways authorities and Highways England to put up temporary roadside posters to publicise the campaign across Shropshire, Telford and Wrekin, Herefordshire and Worcestershire.

As one of the first on the portal in 2017, West Midlands dealt with 208 submissions, which increased to 951 the following year, and 3,242 in 2019.

West Midlands Police Traffic Investigations Manager Stuart Baker said: “We have already topped that figure in 2020, despite the pandemic and fewer people being on the roads.

“The portal has been a great success, providing an easy way for video footage and photos of offences to be submitted by members of the public.

“The third-party submissions mean that examples of poor and potentially very hazardous driving are being captured and punished – these are offences that most likely would otherwise not have been detected and, in that respect, it’s helping make our roads safer.”

Nationwide, 23,000 submissions were made to the NDCSP and 33 forces across the country use it.

Furthermore, data from Nextbase’s data hosting partner – Egress, which guarantees a high level of security and ensures footage goes straight from uploader to the relevant police force – shows that half of all uploads to the NDCSP have resulted in some form of prosecution.

Bryn Brooker, Marketing Director of Nextbase, added: “The Portal was created to benefit both the police and public.

“By nurturing an equal partnership between the public and their local police forces, we are seeing the enormous benefits that Dash Cam use can have in our goal for safer roads. We are seeing growth year-on-year in each of their cases, as they receive more and more reports of dangerous driving.

“It is great to see them rallying behind the Portal that we have built.”

Anyone wanting to submit dash cam footage of dangerous driving can do so here.

 

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