RESIDENTS concerned about motorists who speed through their communities “like a bat out of hell” could be trained to help tackle the problem, a Sidmouth Town Council meeting heard.

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But police have warned that many drivers who are perceived as going too fast are actually sticking to the limit – and a lack of resources means officers can no longer target specific areas.

Councillor Jack Brokenshire said residents had complained to him about speeding traffic in Sidford High Street and Temple Street.

“They go up there sometimes like a bat out of hell,” he told colleagues on Monday. “It’s about time something is done about it.”

PC Jim Tyrrell told councillors there was a difference between perceived speed and actual speed.

He added: “We no longer have such a good supply of resources to dedicate our time to targeting speeding in any certain areas.”

PC Tyrrell added that a “perceived” problem in Sid Road had been investigated in the past and there was “no evidence” of excess speed.

Cllr Christine Drew, who lives in Temple Street, said of the stretch: “You get the odd one but on the whole it is perception. I really believe that.”

Cllr Stuart Hughes added: “There is always the opportunity [for concerned residents] to set up a community speed watch. They can go through training with the police and are provided with equipment

“In Sidford there would be plenty of places to carry out the role safely.”

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