Speed Watch bid to slow down drivers
CREWKERNE drivers could feel "persecuted" by a new scheme to get communities involved in road safety, according to the town mayor.
The Community Speed Watch Programme will see local volunteers on the streets with powers to report vehicles driving over the speed limit to the police.
Around six local residents, including three town councillors, have been trained and are waiting on equipment before hitting speeding hotspots in the town including Broadshard, Ashlands Road, North Street, Station Road and West Street.
Mayor of Crewkerne, Robin Pailthorpe said drivers could feel "persecuted" by the new plans which will see pairs of residents record the speed of passing cars using hand-held devices.
Thinking of buying a new computer for Christmas?
Save 10% on all Windows 7 Custom Built Desktop Computer Packages. Gaming PC's, Media Centres & More!!
Windows Desktops Only, Purchased before 12/12/13.
Package Includes Tower, Screen, Keyboard & Mouse.
Domestic Customers Only
Contact: 0845 0177033
Valid until: Thursday, December 12 2013
He said: "We know that some motorists will feel they are being persecuted by people trying to catch them out but it has to be stressed that we are not looking to secure prosecutions.
"The point of the scheme is to make people aware of their speed and slow down."
The scheme has been successfully launched in nearby East Chinnock.
He added: "When I drive through East Chinnock it's easy to see the speed guns and think 'here we go again' but the fact is you slow when you know you are being watched."
He added: "Crewkerne is a busy town with narrow roads and we have to ensure people's safety."
Deputy town clerk, Annette Roffey, who is co-ordinating the scheme, said: "We know not everyone is going to be happy about this – some people seem to think they have some kind of right to speed – but the fact is that seeing people checking speed on the streets will make drivers slow down."
Community Speed Watch volunteers will be able to pass information to the police who will issue a warning letter to people caught going over the speed limit.
The new scheme comes after a recent traffic survey showed more than one in 10 drivers flout speed limits in two key areas of the town.
The results of the survey by Somerset County Council's highways department were discussed at a meeting of Crewkerne Town Council on Monday.
It showed that 15 per cent of drivers on Station Road and Lyme Road were travelling at 40pmh or more in the designated 30pmh zones.
Councillors agreed that Speed Indication Devices, which show drivers how fast they are travelling on an illuminated sign, should be installed in both locations for two weeks every four months.
Traffic surveys are also due to take place on Broadshard, Kit Hill and West Street in the coming months.