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Anti-speed scheme ‘making a difference’

Community Speedwatch volunteers Coun Norman Dunbar and Christine Barrell.
Community Speedwatch volunteers Coun Norman Dunbar and Christine Barrell.

A police initiative designed to help tackle speeding is making good progress in Cramlington and Seaton Valley.

The number of Community Speedwatch volunteers in this area is up to five and more people are being vetted into the system.

Those who sign up receive relevant training, support and specialist equipment to enable them to monitor traffic speed in areas where local residents have said they are concerned speeding is an issue.

Police Community Support Officer (PCSO) Barry Elliott looks after the arrangements for the scheme in Cramlington and Seaton Valley.

He said: “The volunteers identify the problem locations and those who are caught speeding by them are sent a letter and their details are put on a secure database.

“If they are caught again, a police officer will visit their home and it may result in an official police warning.

“These visits definitely have a positive impact on drivers and we use the information gained by volunteers to identify areas where enforcement action needs to be taken to tackle speeding.”

Two people are required for Community Speedwatch patrols – one to hold the speed gun in position and the other to write down the details of any speeding vehicles.

One of the volunteers, New Hartley resident Christine Barrell, said: “As many people in the village now know that I’m a volunteer, they mention to me or say on social media where they believe are problem speeding areas.”

Fellow volunteer Norman Dunbar, Cramlington Town councillor for the Eastfield ward, said: “We are not purposefully out there to catch people speeding, we are there to monitor the traffic and help make the roads safer, particularly for children and elderly residents.”

For more information, call PCSO Elliott on 07736 193701 or email him – 6574@north umbria.pnn.police.uk