I have just read an article on the front page of BT's internet pages. Apparently in Scotland the police have announced they are abandoning the discretionary allowance it previously gave motorists, warnings given for being 1 mph over the limit followed by points and £100 fine. The article states that other forces are set to do away with the discretionary margin of error.
Is this the way to improve road safety as the numbers of road casualties has increased for the first time in years? I think not.
Most of us will be liable to a fixed penalty every time we venture onto the roads because at some point in our journey we will be over the speed limit by 1 mph. Most of us will recognise this and reduce our speed accordingly. However, what about drivers who drive at an inappropriate speed but within the limit? How will their unsafe driving be censured?
What about targeting drivers who continually flout speed limits and spend more time looking for enforcement cameras than they do thinking about and planning their drive?
Zero tolerance to speeding sounds like something we should all be in favour of. In reality most if us do our best to stay within the limits. However, I think this is no more than an attempt to catch some headlines and does not take road safety any further forward. Well meaning but pointless, excuse the pun.
Who are going to enforce this policy? Forget the police, because they will be too busy issuing themselves penalty notices every time they find themselves over the limit by 1 mph whilst on routine patrol! By the end of the week, they will all be disqualified!
My thoughts? Culture and attitudes to driving and road safety will not change overnight.
Education is the way forward. Something I am not convinced we place enough value upon. No one has ever been killed by a maths equation unless, of cause the book they were in, was thrown at them! However, everyday some one is killed on our roads - pedestrian, cyclist, motorcyclist, car driver and people driving for work. People of all ages and from all backgrounds. Where is the national road safety campaign? With the exception of some hard working organisations there seems to be a lack of interest or commitment.
Forget enforcement of speeding motorists 1 MPH over the limit. Spend money instead on developing educational intervention and programmes which work and can be implemented nationally and embed into the national curriculum.
Zero tolerance towards the lack of road safety education should be our focus.