Crackdown on HGVs by Northamptonshire Police in a bid to improve safety awareness

Picture: Northamptonshire Police. No action was taken against any of the drivers in this photograph
Picture: Northamptonshire Police. No action was taken against any of the drivers in this photograph

A campaign to increase awareness of safer driving practices targeted HGV drivers in Northamptonshire.

Officers from Northamptonshire Police and Northamptonshire Fire and Rescue Service were at the Rugby A5 truck stop at Lilbourne earlier this week as part of an HGV operation.

Checks on 46 vehicles were carried out with police discovering one overweight vehicle and two MOT offences. In all, 60 crime prevention packs were handed out to lorry drivers.

The campaign was run alongside Warwickshire Police and other partner agencies including British Transport Police, Home Office Immigration Enforcement, HM Revenue and Customs, Northamptonshire Highways, Trading Standards and the Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency.

Members of the Safer Roads Team (a joint team between Northamptonshire Police and Northamptonshire Fire and Rescue Service) spoke to lorry drivers about a range of safety issues and handed out advice.

Vehicles were searched by Home Office Immigration Enforcement staff, but all were found to be in order.

Sara Postlethwaite, engagement team leader for the Safer Roads Team, said: “We gave out about 60 crime prevention and road safety packs to HGV drivers at the A5 Rugby Truck stop. These included information on speed limits, preventing lorry crime, a map of weight-limited routes across Northamptonshire, information on planning your journey safely, when to take a break and vehicle safety, driving fuel efficiently and general road safety tips for drivers.

“We received 16 survey replies to find out about the pressures which may affect driver behaviour, driver training and causes of HGV collisions. This will help us to engage with HGV companies, drivers and other road users for future campaigns to improve road safety.”

Community engagement officer, Gemma Rutland, said: “Northamptonshire Police work with local haulage companies to promote road safety messages through training and sharing information.

“The majority of lorry drivers and companies are compliant with health and safety regulations and are safe drivers.

“However, we also understand there are lots of pressures on lorry drivers to deliver their goods as fast and as cost-effectively as possible and these can lead to conflicting priorities.

“We have been raising awareness about some of the issues which may affect lorry drivers and providing useful information to promote safer driving practices and encourage safer road compliance.”