Police partnership network to tackle road safety

Police in South Molton using a speed gun to target speeding drivers. Picture: Tony Gussin

This week has been designated Road Safety Week - Credit: Tony Gussin

On Friday councillors from across the region came together in Plymouth to scrutinise my decision making in a regular meeting designed to hold me to account. The challenge from this Police and Crime Panel is robust but these sessions, which can be attended by members of the public, are an essential part of the democratic process.

Those who watched the meeting online will have seen that there was significant discussion about road safety.

Regular readers of this column will know that as national road safety lead this is a considerable concern for me, and it is why reducing the number of people killed and seriously injured on our roads is one of four priorities identified in my Police and Crime Plan for 2021-25, a strategic document that was unveiled on Friday.

This week has been designated Road Safety Week by the charity Brake. As the nights draw in and with Christmas around the corner this is a well-timed opportunity to remind road users of the dangers we face and some of the measures that can be taken.

In Devon and Cornwall we are working on this threat to public safety on a number of levels through the Vision Zero South West partnership. It is made up of a network of organisations that have together agreed that any death on our roads is one too many.

Creating a road safety network will require a concerted effort from all the emergency services and local authorities, and the involvement and consent of our communities. The same is true of the three other police and crime plan priorities of reducing drugs harm, antisocial behaviour and violent crime.

The good news is that we have an army of volunteers to support the efforts of a police force which itself is considerably larger than it was four years ago (and it is still growing). There is now a network of 360 councillor advocates in our force area, providing a firm link between their constituents and policing teams, 540 Community Speedwatch Volunteers, numerous Community Watch schemes and 269 volunteer Special Constables.

You can view the Road Safety Week videos and read the new Police and Crime Plan online at www.devonandcornwall-pcc.gov.uk