NORTH Somerset Council is applying to the Government for authorisation to enforce moving traffic offences.

It is hoped that, if granted, the council's use of its new power will improve traffic safety on the roads.

The council would be able to target hot spot areas where drivers commonly break the law and put others in danger.

The council's website reads: "Moving traffic offences create unsafe environments for the public, placing all road users at risk.

"People with limited mobility and additional access requirements are especially vulnerable to drivers who ignore the rules of the road."

The first site to be targeted will be the no right hand turn when exiting Searle Crescent near Asda onto Winterstoke Road.

As of the end of May 2021, councils can apply to have legal powers to enforce offences including turning left or right where it is prohibited, going the wrong way in a one-way street, and stopping on school-keep-clear areas.

Cllr Hannah Young, North Somerset Council's executive member with responsibility for highways, said: "This is not an income stream for the council, it is about improving safety in areas where drivers are flouting regulations.

"All income must be spent on the scheme, maintaining camera equipment or on highway improvements.

"Enforcement of moving traffic restrictions will be undertaken using Automatic Number Plate Recognition (ANPR) camera technology.

"Images of vehicles breaking the traffic regulation orders will be sent for officer review with either a warning letter being issued if it is a first offence and within the first six months of that site being enforced, or a fixed penalty notice being issued.  

"Once a site has become compliant, the camera will be relocated to another site."

Each site considered for enforcement will first be evidenced by survey cameras and data provided by the police and the Department for Transport to make sure that there is appropriate need.

Following this, road users will be encouraged to engage with the council to gather information about site usage.

The council has launched engagement on the pilot site near Asda this month.

If successful, the council will officially have the new powers early next year and will be responsible for enforcing the law for moving traffic offences in certain locations.