Although Speedwatch is
exclusively an educational
scheme, it does provide
for initial steps to be taken
towards enforcement if all
attempts prove futile at
making a repeat offender
comply with the law through
However, our statistics
based on years of collated
Speedwatch data show us
that the educational approach to changing driver behaviour works in the vast majority of cases.
Consequently, we believe that intelligence-based, focused enforcement should be kept exclusively for excessive speeders and the
identified group of drivers, who continue to exceed the speed limits, either in defiance of earlier warnings or show evidence of
being beyond educational reach.
CSW Online also collates DVLA data automatically about TAX, MOT, and SORN (Statutory Off-Road Notification) status. Cars recorded
speeding (and hence observed driving on a public road) under any of these compulsory conditions neglected are also flagged up by
the system for targeted enforcement by the police.
The automatically generated vehicle specific audit trail collated and attached to every recorded offence makes it much easier to
identify the driving pattern of the offenders who choose to make our roads dangerous for others to use.
Because the scheme technically operates at the bottom of the enforcement spectrum, we believe that to protect the community
volunteers' integrity and to prevent the schemes from being vilified or ridiculed, the visual separation from any police involvement
is paramount. Groups should not be accompanied by uniformed police officers at the roadside. It risks the easy and instant relegation
of the volunteers' participation in the eyes of some parts of the public to that of assistance or direct enforcement collaboration.
If local police want to use the allocated Speedwatch sites as the basis for their enforcement activity, this should be done without
the visual connection to that of the Speedwatch groups' activities. It is neither in Speedwatch's nor the police's interest to have
the volunteers being stereotyped as 'Police's little helpers', 'Wannabe police officer', or 'Policing on the cheap.'.
Equally, the National Organisation advocates (and works to establish) the possibility that before targeted enforcement is
initiated, multiple repeat offenders should be offered the option of taking a speed awareness course as alternative to the
focused police targeting. This will make the choice of any further, potentially punitive action rest with the offender themselves,
instead of a wrongly perceived consequence of repeated observations by Speedwatch.