Unmarked HGV used to target unsafe drivers

8 March 2024

As part of the North Yorkshire Police response to Operation Contact, the dedicated Road Safety Team are working with roads policing officers and using an unmarked HGV cab to help target unsafe drivers and criminality on North Yorkshire’s road network.

The HGV which is loaned to various police forces from the National Highways Agency provides officers with a bird’s eye view of the vehicles. Two police officers patrol in the HGV cab, one is driving and the other is responsible for gathering evidence. Once an offence is identified the HGV team use a police radio to contact officers who are following from behind to stop the vehicle in question.

Operation Contact is the response to a national two-week operation to target the use of mobile phones at the wheel. It is one of the “fatal 5” and a significant contributory factor to many serious and fatal road traffic collisions. Drivers who use their hand-held device at the wheel are four times more likely to be in a crash.

Yesterday (Thursday 07 March 2024) they used the HGV to patrol the A1, A19 and the M62. Several offences were identified including no seatbelt, driver reading notes at the wheel, using a mobile phone when driving, a HGV overtaking in lane three and excess speed. All the drivers were reported for the offences identified.

Inspector Clive Turner from North Yorkshire Police’s Roads Policing Group commented:

Various excuses were given to our officers for numerous traffic offences, and these are just not acceptable. Road safety is everyone’s responsibility and drivers must do everything they can to ensure that they are not only keeping themselves safe but also other road users safe.

We know that the majority of drivers who use our roads every day are sensible and safe while behind the wheel, but I personally find it disappointing to see how many people simply ignore the law.

I’d also like to say a big thank you to Highways England for the use of the HGV so we can help keep motorists safe on the county’s roads.

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