Our locality is lucky to have the Ferndown Community Speedwatch volunteer group. They are a group who go out of their way to help keep our roads safe. Our local community speed watch team monitor the traffic speed in and around Ferndown. They provide the police, motorists and council with vital data. Especially on local roads that may be causing dangers to the public due to drivers speeding.
Speeding motorists do not get “shopped”. But they will get a letter explaining the error of their ways. As well as how such carelessness could cause a tragedy. Which we have to say is somewhat less traumatic than getting 3 or 6 points on your licence. Traumatic or not, police enforcement, fines and points is the only other alternative.
The Community Speedwatch team has just restarted after the Covid problems. Below is their latest report. We think you will find it interesting. If you would like to help out in this highly worthwhile community initiative please find contact details at the end of the report.
Watch Your Speed in Ferndown
Our community speedwatch team of volunteers resumed their service in mid-April, with Dorset Police reinstating their authority following the easing of lockdown restrictions.
Their sole aim is to encourage speeding motorists to slow down and observe the prescribed speed limits. To help motorists they deliberately wear hi-viz jackets so to attract everyone’s attention. Where motorists are driving too fast the group arrange for speeding motorists to receive an Advice Letter issued by Dorset Police. Only in exceptional circumstances do they ask a police officer to visit the vehicle owner at their registered address.
In the first two months of resuming their service they completed 17 roadside checks and were seen by over 10,800 motorists, with most observing the speed limit or slowing when they saw their speed was being monitored. Notwithstanding this, they still unfortunately reported 346 speeding motorists to Dorset Police.
Informing and Raising awareness
Ron Cross, our Ferndown Community Speedwatch Coordinator, explained our aim is simply to slow speeding motorists and to raise awareness of local speed limits. We especially hope this helps motorists that unintentionally speed by encouraging them to take more care. We therefore do not issue Fixed Penalty Notices and unlike most other Dorset speedwatch groups have deliberately chosen to not endorse such severe action.
Importantly we hope speeding motorists take notice of Advice Letters as many of our roadside sessions are revisited by Dorset Police who deploy their Speed Enforcement Officers to the same locations.
In the past two months our volunteers have focused on four roads, namely Victoria Road, Wimborne Road East, Dudsbury Avenue and Ameysford Road. They have also started to monitor the new 30mph section of Ringwood Road to help raise awareness that the speed limit on this section is no longer 40mph.
Ron added the team hope to recommence roadside sessions soon close to our schools on Glenmoor Road and Church Road . Previously monitoring on these roads had to be suspended because their narrow pavements were not practical for adhering to social distancing guidelines.
He added discussions are underway between Parish Councils and Dorset Police to create several new community speedwatch groups. Including two in our area at Wimborne and Colehill. Other active groups already include Stapehill, West Moors, St Ives & St Leonards, Corfe Mullen and Broadstone.
To help keep our roads safe Dorset Police has requested that if you have particular concerns about speeding and dangerous driving in your neighbourhoods, you can report this in-confidence on the Dorset Road Safe website www.dorsetroadsafe.org.uk. Or send an e-mail to email@example.com. They also welcoming dash cam footage and digital photographic evidence of dangerous driving incidents. Including instances of excessive speeding. For more information, please refer to www.dorset.police.uk/opsnap.
Contact for Ferndown Speedwatch Group
The Ferndown Community Speedwatch group rely solely on the help of volunteers. They still regularly receive a lot of enquiries and requests asking them to patrol more roads. They are a lovely enthusiastic group that just need a little more help from local residents, so if you would like to help and can spare two hours a month, please drop us an email on firstname.lastname@example.org and we will forward your details onto Ron.