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Operation targets road users to improve safety in Dorchester

Police officers from Dorchester have been targeting drivers to improve road safety in the town.

Operation Indri, run by Dorchester Police in conjunction with Dorset Police’s Traffic Department, served to raise awareness of the number of people being killed or seriously injured on the roads of West Dorset.

During the day long operation which ran earlier this month – held as part of the ongoing ‘no excuse’ campaign to reduce casualties on Dorset’s roads – drivers breaking the law around Dorchester were stopped and issued with tickets.  

Officers worked on foot and in plain patrol cars to detect and deal with offences that could increase the risk of drivers or other road users being hurt.

Eighteen people were stopped for not wearing a seatbelt and 32 people were stopped for using a mobile phone. Twenty-eight further people were issued fixed penalty notices for speeding. A number of these drivers were also recommended for enrolment on the Drivers Awareness Scheme.

Excuses for breaking the law ranged from being late for a job interview to being capable of driving safely while using a mobile phone.

In all cases when vehicles were stopped, drivers were handed a leaflet which looked to reinforce the message of what the police were trying to achieve during the operation.

These leaflets showed the number of people killed or seriously injured during road traffic collision on Dorset roads in 2008, 09 and 10.

Inspector Les Fry, Neighbourhood Inspector for Dorchester and Sherborne, said: “These results are disappointing as clearly many motorists are not learning that it is dangerous to speed, use a mobile phone or not wear a seat belt when driving.

“This operation has sent out a very positive message that we are committed to continuing to reducing road casualties across the Dorchester area.”

The ‘no excuse’ project was launched by the Dorset Road Safe partnership in January 2010 and focuses on driver distraction, the use of seatbelts, excessive speed and impairment (drink and drugs). It is supported by a strong multi-agency message aimed at reducing death and injury.