A TOTAL of 136 motorway offences were detected in just five days through ‘Operation Tramline’ run by Warwickshire Police’s new Commercial Vehicle Unit (CVU).
During the operation, which ended on January 17, the CVU used a specially-adapted HGV ‘supercab’ owned by Highways England to observe drivers in all vehicles and deal with any offences.
Inspector Mick Huntley said “The operation is about keeping people safe on our roads and officers are looking for people that could pose serious danger to themselves and other road users.”
The ‘supercab’ is invaluable because it allows officers to see all road users from an elevated position, giving a much clearer view of what they are doing.
Over the five days, the CVU stopped a mix of vehicles on the M6, M40, M42, M69 and A46 in Warwickshire.
Out of 136 driver offences, 15 people were stopped for using a mobile phone whilst driving (a potential 6 points on their licence and a £200 fine) and a further 54 were stopped and dealt with because they were not wearing seatbelts (potential £100 fine).
A child was found unrestrained in one vehicle driving at high speed on the motorway that should have had a child car seat fitted (up to £500 fine).
The CVU stopped one vehicle for driving too closely to the vehicle in front, and two were stopped for careless driving.
Seven vehicles were pulled over for driving at speeding and a further 18 were stopped because officers had observed the driver was not in proper control.
Due to the seriousness of the offence, two drivers – one on mobile phone and one not in proper control – were referred to the Traffic Commissioner who can take action against drivers including suspending or revoking a driver’s licence.
Three vehicles were stopped and seized for having no tax and five were seized for having no insurance. Four were found to have no MoT.
In addition one person was arrested for being wanted on warrant.
Eleven vehicles were found to have insecure loads and ten HGVs were moved on from the hard shoulder of the motorway where they had parked near to a service station to avoid parking fees in a designated parking place at the services.
Foreign vehicles pay a levy to use the UK’s roads and out of five HGV levy checks one was issued with a Roadside Deposit Notice as the levy had not been paid. After checking the same vehicle’s tachograph, it was found the same driver had interfered with his tachograph to falsify driver hours and received a £500 on the spot fine.
The vehicle was immobilised and the driver forced to have a nine hour rest.
Since April 2019 Operation Tramline has detected around 600 offences on Warwickshire’s road network.