Dozens of Northamptonshire's dodgiest drivers counting cost of being caught on camera
#OpSnap campaign uses dashcam footage to snare mad motorists
Dozens of Northamptonshire's dodgiest drivers are about to be hit in the wallet thanks to dashcam video submitted by fellow motorists.
Police were sent 131 video clips during the first three months of 2021 as part of Operation Snap, which allows members of the public to report driving offences using their own cameras.
Some of the shocking clips made public this week showed a vehicle pulling out of a side road without waiting for a gap in traffic and another swapping lanes on the M1, cutting up one car it had just undertaken then slamming on its brakes
Driving without due care and attention topped the list of offences with 32 NIP letters sent out offering £100 fixed penalties and three penalty points — although more serious cases can go to court and result in fines of up to £2,500 and disqualification.
Others caught on camera included dangerous driving, motorists not being in proper control of a vehicle, ignoring solid white line road markings, dangerous passenger loads and running red lights.
Northamptonshire Police Safer Roads operations manager, Matt O’Connell, said: “Despite raising awareness of the tragic consequences, it’s always disappointing to receive so many examples of poor driver behaviour, and that some drivers are still willing to put themselves and others at risk.
“Thanks to Operation Snap and the continued support from the public, there are now thousands of additional eyes helping to keep the county’s road safer.
"This has enabled the Force to act against driving offences it otherwise wouldn’t see.”
Previous clips released by Police show a car narrowly avoiding a head-on smash after following an ambulance on the wrong side of the A43, a van overtaking dangerously on zig-zags next to a pedestrian crossing in Northampton.
Latest warnings come as thousands are getting back on the road following the relaxation of Covid-19 travel restrictions.
Police fear some motorists could now be driving further than they have for more than a year and could be rusty behind the wheel.
Anybody can report driving offences by easily uploading their video evidence online and completing a form, automatically creating a witness statement to provide a full account of the incident.
These reports are checked by trained police staff to see if matches the Operation Snap criteria and if a driving offence has been committed.
Two most common reasons for reports being rejected are insufficient video evidence to support a prosecution, or the video has not been submitted within 14 days of the offence being committed.
Matt added: “Although this service allows people to share evidence of driving offences with us quickly and easily, it’s important to remember we only have 14 days from when the offence is committed to take appropriate action.
“It's also important to remember we examine footage for evidence of offences by all parties, so please don't break the law in order to report someone else to us, or you could be in trouble as well.”
■ For more information about Operation Snap or to submit video footage, visit the Northamptonshire Police website at www.northants.police.uk/OpSnap