ABD Local co-ordinator: No-one at present. Join us!

“The wrong managers”
“I am a RPU (not Traffic) sergeant in West Midlands. Every day I see appallingly bad driving and poorly maintained vehicles. The consequences of these is deaths on the roads. Last October, for example, we had 4 fatal and 2 very serious injury accidents. This was akin to 4 murder investigations being run simultaneously by one sergeant and 8 constables.
I believe there are three reasons for the state we are in. The first is the low priority given at both national and local level, to all traffic policing matters. I know ACPO now accepts this, but things have gone too far to be fixed in a hurry and a few words in the National Policing Plan. We do not enforce traffic legislation. BCU commanders concentrate resources on national targets set by the Government. There is only one “traffic” key performance indicator: reducing fatal and serious injury accidents.
Secondly, the public has become alienated from the police. The public supported “traffic cops” even if they were wary, because they could see the value of our work. Speed cameras have made the police the enemy of the motorist, even if we have nothing to do with them. They are seen as the police making money.
My third reason is the current standard of police driving. Most Panda drivers have only a one-day test involving 2 hours driving, in place of the old 4 weeks course. Yet the public expects a Panda driver to be a first class driver, and have the best and most powerful cars on the roads.”

Un-named police officer writing in POLICE [pdf 463k] (The newspaper of the Police Federation) March 2004

Congestion set to continue
Congestion on the M5 and M6 through the West Midlands is set to continue for a while yet as the government have scrapped plans for a western bypass. The plan was already a step back from earlier plans for a western motorway to complete an orbital loop with the M42 and M6 Toll. Vigorous campaigning by anti-car groups and NIMBYs has stopped any building for now. The ABD will continue to push for the completion of the orbital motorway, until we get a government that puts the needs of drivers, businesses and the economy above the vociferous minority.
One Third?
The West Midlands Road Accident Review 2001 showed that for pedestrian accidents, excessive speed comprised only 26 of 2364 causation factors, that's 1%.
For non-pedestrian accidents, excessive speed comprised only 330 of 8165 causation factors, that's 4%.
A combined figure gives us 356 of 10529, or 3.3%.
So where do the authorities get this "one third" nonsense from?
Do they just shift the decimal point to suit their purpose?
The report can be seen on the ringroad website.
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