Road safety campaigns are pointless if we are not prepared to rethink road designs

Changing people and their behaviour is one aspect of road safety campaigns, but the real key to reducing death and injury is in understanding why this behaviour occurs in the first instance, and tackling these tragedies by removing flaws in the road design. Newcycling congratulates Northumbria Police on Operation Dragoon, see 1), taking care of Education and Enforcement, albeit temporarily as a time-limited project. Yet, the group advises that the Engineering element – the third big E of a holistic road safety approach – is missing. A Freedom of Information request showed that Newcastle is not taking sufficient action on[…]

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Northumbria Police and the law

After a useful and hopeful meeting with Police and Crime Commissioner’s deputy, we reported here, our hopes were quickly squashed for Northumbria Police to adopt a real, honest and fair attitude towards city cycling any time soon. It appears that their officers do not even know the basics of the Highway Code and their boss, Vera Baird, thinks she’s done enough. As chair of Newcycling and a city centre bike commuter, I will certainly add my voice to the chorus: I have seen, too many times, a police officer waiting in the bike box with no reason to do so…[…]

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Meeting the force

A delegation consisting of RoadPeace the national charity for road crash victims supported in the Northeast by Thompsons Solicitors Sustrans national charity for sustainable transport us (campaign for better cycling provision in Newcastle and surroundings) met the Deputy Police and Crime Commissioner (PCC) Mark Dennett on 11 September 2013. Recap. The meeting was set up as a result of writing to all PCC candidates to discuss cycling and policing would they be elected. That was after our members told us to lobby for improved police investigations, reporting, enforcement and overall liaison. A tall order! All candidates responded positively. The meeting[…]

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Meeting with Vera Baird – Northumbria PCC

We will meet our Police and Crime Commissioner Vera Baird, jointly with our partners Sustrans and RoadPeace NE – and take your concerns to her, which are condensed in this letter we sent to the PCC candidates last year, and Vera replied to quite favourably. We’ll talk to Vera about investigation of road crashes as a matter of priority. Here’s the story so far https://newcycling.org/tags/pcc

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PCC candidate – Peter Andras (Lib) outlines:

“Thank you for your email. “Personally I am in the favour of supporting cycling. I am a local councillor in North Jesmond and as you know we are doing local consultation here about how to improve cycling access through Jesmond. “The question of a liason officer for the cycling community is an operational issue of the police. My principled position about the role of the Police and Crime Commissioner (PCC) is that the PCC should not interfere with the operational organisation of the police. Thus, I could not commit myself to resolve a such operational issue as the establishing of[…]

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PCC candidate – Vera Baird (Lab) outlines:

“Thanks for writing. I can agree with all the concerns you have in the attachment and am sympathetic generally as an occasional cyclist myself. It would be good to meet soon, if I am elected to discuss how to progress some of the issues you raise. “I am not clear what policing resources are currently allocated to cycling and/or what partnership working there is which may be staffed from the local authority or elsewhere. Until I have access to a clear understanding of what is currently available, what more is needed and the scale of the work to be done,[…]

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PCC candidate – Phil Butler (Con) outlines:

“Really appreciate you getting in touch. Hopefully you will be aware that I’m a massive cycling fan? Keen to discuss this further locally if we can? I like the idea but what about the Sustrans people they have local volunteers? Unfortunately I can’t open the attachment but as I say I would like to talk face to face with someone.” We clarified “What we are after is a police officer liaising with the cycling community. A point of contact so to speak. Sustrans are great, you are right, but a liaison officer would not be something they can facilitate. So.[…]

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We’ve written to the PCC candidates

We’ve sent a letterĀ to the three main candidates for Police and Crime Commissioner. And we said we’d let you know who’s supportive of our call for a cycle liaison officer. And here are their answers. In alphabetical order… Peter Andras (Lib) @Andras4NUPolice https://newcycling.org/news/20121009/pcc-candidate-peter-andras-lib-outlines Vera Baird (Lab) @Vera4PCC https://newcycling.org/news/20121009/pcc-candidate-vera-baird-lab-outlines Phil Butler (Con) @Philbutler2000 https://newcycling.org/news/20121009/pcc-candidate-phil-butler-con-outlines Tweet them, ask them what their plans are to improve the lot for cyclists!

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Police & Crime Commissioner – your call

We are in the process of writing to candidates for the Police and Crime Commissioner. We will ask them to support our call for a liaison officer. There’s so much to be sorted out when it comes to policing transport matters. Recent discussions on our facebook group (open to everyone, public) and our googlegroup (members only) showed the strength of feeling that something ought to be done. There is a sense of injustice in the air. The amount of bad driving complaints we hear about from members also warrants some action. So, wait and see what the candidates have to[…]

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