Driving home road safety
A message from Roger Hirst, Police, Fire and Crime Commissioner for Essex
“If you are stuck for an idea for a New Year’s Resolution, consider making one that will make you a better driver.
As your Police, Fire and Crime Commissioner I would ask every reader of this blog to consider their driving behaviours and those of people they know. Do you know someone who drink or drug drives? Call Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111 and report them, if you get in a car with someone and they are not wearing a seatbelt tell them to put it on. Put your mobile phones away whilst driving, if needs be put them in your glovebox or hide them in a bag so you are not tempted to use them and if you know someone who regularly speeds or who is a dangerous driver, report them to Essex Police using its online service. The more intelligence the police have, the more chance they have of protecting the public and saving lives.
Road safety is a subject close to my heart and is important to the people of Essex.
One of the seven priorities in my Police and Crime Plan is to improve safety on our roads. My objective is to reduce harm on the roads and promote safer driving. We can do that by working in partnership with our colleagues across the emergency services and local authority partners but the people who can make a real difference are you – the people of Essex who drive and use our roads.
At many of the public meetings I attend I get asked why police spend time targeting drivers when they should be targeting ‘real’ criminals. Bad drivers are ‘real’ criminals and they cause harm to innocent people if they execute behaviours covered by the ‘Fatal Four’. The ‘Fatal Four’ behaviours are speeding, driving under the influence of drink or drugs, using a mobile phone or not wearing a seatbelt. These are all things that people may think it is acceptable to do, they make think it is their choice but those behaviours could destroy not only their life, or their families’ lives but those of innocent people too.
The members of the Safer Essex Roads Partnership, SERP, – an organisation made up of Essex Police, Essex County Fire and Rescue Service, the East of England Ambulance Service, the Herts and Essex Air Ambulance, Essex County Council, Southend-on-Sea Borough Council and Thurrock Council – do great work trying to educate drivers and crack down on offenders. They are first responders at the scene of road traffic collisions and SERP’s Christmas anti drink/drug campaign really hammers home the message of #howitfeels to deal with the aftermath of such tragic circumstances. I would really like 2018 to a year where less people know #howitfeels and we can do this together.”