The National Police Chiefs’ Council has moved to clarify remarks made earlier this week by its lead on roads policing.
Chief constable Anthony Bangham faced controversy following widespread media reports that he suggested that drivers travelling at just one mph over the speed limit should be prosecuted.
A statement on the National Police Chiefs’ Council (NPCC) website says Mr Bangham was talking about ‘the new refreshed roads policing strategy’.
The NPCC quotes Mr Bangham as follows: “Nationally on average five people are killed and 66 are seriously injured every day on the roads, and these numbers are on the rise.
“We need to be clearer with the public about what they should expect from the police. I fear we’ve become apologetic about enforcing laws designed to prevent people being killed or injured. I want us to do more to proactively detect people driving using a mobile or speeding on high harm routes, and be clear that they can expect to be stopped and could receive the full penalty.
“As an example, anything from 31mph onwards is over the speed limit and the options for a police response – a speed awareness course, fixed penalty notice or attendance at court – are discretionary based on the circumstances. My message to drivers is – don’t assume you have a free pass if you’re over the limit.
“Police chiefs and Police and Crime Commissioners make decisions about local priorities, including roads policing. Officer discretion and common-sense will remain at the centre of roads policing and there will still be an important place for educational courses to improve driving standards.”