New Roads Policing Unit launched as officers tackle the Fatal Four

Cumbria Police launched its new, dedicated Roads Policing Unit (RPU) today (3 Oct), as part of a commitment to making our county’s roads safer for all.

The change will see the Constabulary move away from officers operating in a dual role as roads policing officers and firearms officers.

Moving forward, Cumbria Police will have an additional 20 officers dedicated solely to roads policing.

 

Chief Constable Rob Carden said: “Too many people are killed or seriously injured on our roads and too often it is as a result of poor driving behaviour, including people drink or drug driving, people being distracted at the wheel and people driving too fast for the road or the conditions.

“Cumbria Police is committed to leading the way on targeting those who are making our roads unsafe for all.

“We have been taking innovative approaches to making our roads safer, including through the use of data analytics and working with partners to target poor driving habits, as with Operation Tramline.

“But we have no greater resource than our officers, which is why we are making this commitment to a dedicated Roads Policing Unit, with dedicated officers who will work day-in and day-out to make our county’s roads safer.”

 

To coincide with the launch of the new RPU, Cumbria Police is holding a Roads Policing Week of Action this week.

The Week of Action will see officers from departments across the force focusing on the Fatal Four – speeding, drink/drug driving, not wearing seat belts, and using mobile phones while driving.

 

Inspector Jack Stabler said: “Having officers dedicated to the new Roads Policing Unit is an investment in our commitment to making significant improvements to road safety across Cumbria.

“We have already re-launched the Road Safety Partnership with our colleagues in other agencies coming together regularly to look at where the danger hotspots are in Cumbria and how we can make a difference – from targeted enforcement to looking at the road itself and whether safety improvements can be made.

“The week of action will mark the launch of the new Roads Policing Unit but will be far from a one-off. These 20 dedicated officers will be out on our county’s roads day and night on the lookout for those who are driving dangerously and putting lives at risk.”

 

The uplift in resources to roads policing comes as Cumbria pursues its Cumbria Vision Zero by 2040 goal.

Vision Zero is a multi-national traffic safety initiative supported by Cumbria Police and its partner agencies, with the goal of no one being killed or seriously injured within the road transport network.

 

Cumbria’s Police, Fire and Crime Commissioner, Peter McCall, said: “I am delighted that we have been able to put more officers into Roads Policing and the launch of a dedicated Roads Policing Unit. This is another tangible benefit of the additional officers we’ve recruited over the last three years.

“Dangerous antisocial driving is a concern that is continuously raised with me as PFCC, and is one of my key priorities for the Police to tackle. We have listened to the concerns people have raised and I’m pleased that we are now able to put more focus on these issues, and indeed other crimes committed whilst using the road network.

“The Police are doing what they can to reduce road deaths and injuries in the county. However, we all share a responsibility to keep our roads safe. We all use the roads, whether as motorists, cyclists or pedestrians, so it is in everyone’s best interest that we take care, obey the rules and laws of the road and respect one another.

“I would urge the public to always drive to the conditions of the road, adhere to the speed limit, never drive under the influence of alcohol or drugs and keep any distractions, such as phones, out of reach and sight.”

Cumbria Police is just one agency among many which is working together to make the county’s roads safer for all.

Mark Parish, the Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency’s Traffic Enforcement Manager for Carlisle, said: “DVSA’s priority is to protect everyone from unsafe drivers and vehicles.

“Working closely with Cumbria Police and other partners is an efficient use of public resources.

“By sharing intelligence and working on operations together, we’ll help keep Cumbria’s roads safer.”

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