A new initiative to encourage communication between the police and truck drivers has been launched in North Yorkshire.
Traffic officers are running a lorry drivers’ Stammtisch at Barton truck stop, off the A1, on the first Wednesday of each month, beginning on the 6 April 2011.
Stammtisch is a German word used to describe regular get-togethers. It was adopted by German police in 2000, when piloting roadside meetings with lorry drivers, in an effort to improve road safety among drivers of HGVs.
Such was the success of the German Stammtisch, the practice was embraced by police forces across Europe, with many UK forces now running their own get-togethers.
Police believe that a regular opportunity to engage with truck drivers will prove extremely beneficial and allow drivers to discuss a range of subjects that directly affect them.
Traffic Sergeant John Lumbard, of Richmond Road Policing Group, sees the Stammtisch as a unique opportunity to improve communication between the police and truck drivers.
He said: “I have been to Barton truck stop and spoken to a number of drivers who all believe that the Stammtisch is very positive and much needed.
“The initiative has been very successful in other force areas and we hope that our Stammtisch will prove equally beneficial to all involved.
“It is a great opportunity for truck drivers to have a chat with us in a relaxed, informal environment and raise any issues or concerns that they have. We are there to help and are happy to discuss any subjects that people wish to cover.
“It is also a good chance for us to get important road safety and crime prevention messages across to people who use the county’s roads on a regular basis.”
The Stammtisch begins at 9am on the first Wednesday of every month at Barton truck stop, situated at Barton Interchange at junction 56 of the A1.
For more information on Stammtisch events visit www.stammtisch.webs.com