Appeal for volunteers to help keep speeding down in Locking Castle

PUBLISHED: 18:25 13 February 2019

Locking Castle, speedwatch volunteers Andrea Stevens and Steven Taplin with PCSO's Heather Searle and Bee Mazur.    

Picture: MARK ATHERTON

Locking Castle, speedwatch volunteers Andrea Stevens and Steven Taplin with PCSO's Heather Searle and Bee Mazur. Picture: MARK ATHERTON

Archant

A SpeedWatch group is appealing for volunteers.

Locking Castle’s Community SpeedWatch branch aims to deter drivers from exceeding the estate’s 20mph limit.

Speeds of up to 35mph in The Maltlands have been recorded and the group is seeking people willing to give up a small amount of time each week to monitor motorists with specialist speed detection equipment.

The scheme is backed by both North Somerset Council and Avon and Somerset Constabulary.

It is the second volunteer group around Weston to be formed, following in the footsteps of Hutton.

Volunteer Steven Taplin told the Mercury: “We want to educate drivers about road safety, there is a lot of negativity surrounding groups like ours but this should not be the case.

“People presume we are here to catch them out, but we just want to make the area safer for the whole community.

“More than anything this is an awareness campaign, the whole of Locking Castle is a 20mph zone but a lot of people do not stick to this.”

As of December, there were 11 SpeedWatch schemes running in North Somerset.

Vehicles observed speeding above a set threshold are sent a warning letter along with advice to help change their driving behaviour.

Further action and enforcement is taken by police against persistent and high-end offenders.

About 2,000 letters were sent to drivers last year, with the volunteer groups covering 41 sites.

A police spokesman said: “We rely on SpeedWatch volunteers who carry out vital work, keeping a log on drivers who are speeding and sending out notices for those caught going over the limit.

“The information and data they gather helps us to identify hot spots and carry out targeted speed enforcement work to help make these areas safer.

“Speed is a significant contributory factor with regards to road collisions and we’re willing to tackle this issue using both enforcement and education.

“Motorists who speed through residential neighbourhoods are often unaware of the impact on local residents, or the danger they pose to other road users and pedestrians.”

To get involved, email stevenrtaplin@gmail.com

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