The Harrogate District Community Safety Partnership brought key partners from the Ripon area together to tackle an on-going issue with street racers in the city centre.
The majority of drivers behave in a responsible manner however there are always a few that spoil an area with their persistent and thoughtless behaviour. By working together the Harrogate Borough Council through its CCTV service, the police, fire and rescue service and local councillor were able to present evidence to the courts.
The hard work has achieved results:
- with the driver of a Mazda MX5, who was skidding around the roundabout at the junction of Victoria Grove and Moss Arcade, being reported for driving without due care and attention and now has to attend a Driver Improvement Course
- The driver of a Ford Focus, who drove through the Victoria Grove Arcade car park with two people hanging out of his boot was prosecuted for dangerous driving. He received a 15 month driving ban and must retake his driving test at the end of the ban. He received a £60 fine and was ordered to do 120 hours community service.
Councillor Margaret Atkinson, Harrogate Borough Council’s Cabinet Member for Public Protection and Rural Affairs, said:
There has been an on-going issue in Ripon city centre with street racers and their dangerous driving. The CCTV operators have been proactive in reporting incidents to the police and their evidence was crucial when the cases came to court.
It is hoped that these sanctions are a warning to other roads users that we take this type of behaviour very seriously.
The CCTV cameras are well placed to view activity and the CCTV operators have direct radio communications to the police, incidents are recorded and passed to the police.
Ripon Minster Ward Councillor Stuart Martin, has been a supportive member of the task group liaising with local residents, his response to the prosecutions was
I am absolutely delighted with these two convictions. Residents of Victoria Grove have had to endure this type of behaviour for some time now and I really hope these sentences serve as a warning to other drivers who think about breaking the law and causing a nuisance. May I thank residents for their patience and all the different agencies involved for their help and support, this has been a real team effort.
Ripon Safer Neighbourhood Police Officer Matthew Scott added:
These prosecutions should send out a clear message, particularly to younger drivers, that careless and dangerous driving will not be tolerated by North Yorkshire Police or the courts. Such driving endangers other road users and the driver themselves. We will continue to gather evidence and where appropriate prosecute drivers who fail to drive within the law.
The message cannot be clearer if you’re driving is inappropriate we will look to prosecute. A number of notices have been placed in the city centre to inform the community about the outcomes.