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Southport and  Mersey Reporter -  Your free online newspaper service covering the Merseyside region - (Greater Liverpool).
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Issue:- 6 March 2014


MERSEYSIDE Police Officers have issued 180 road traffic offence reports, 17 fixed penalty notices and seized 4 vehicles as part of a campaign to crackdown on unsafe drivers and cut the number of cyclists being killed or injured on Merseyside's roads.  The operation is aimed at drivers of commercial vehicles, particularly lorries, in LiverpoolCity centre and the surrounding area.  Specially trained officers have been using an unmarked bus and truck-cab throughout 2 weeks in February to patrol theCity and the county's motorway network. One has been driving the vehicles, whilst the other has used a handheld video camera to catch suspected offenders on film.  Drivers have been targeted who are believed to be committing offences which mean they are not in full control of the vehicle, including using handheld mobile phones, multimedia equipment and reading, eating or drinking whilst they are behind the wheel. Routine breath tests have also been carried out as part of the force's on-going drink and drug driving campaign.  Chief Inspector John Hogan, Matrix Serious Organised Crime Roads Policing Unit said:- "Through their sheer weight and size, heavy goods vehicles can pose a huge risk to cyclists and other road users if they are being driven carelessly. 98 cyclists were killed or injured on Merseyside's Roads in 2013 and we are determined to significantly reduce that number. This latest fortnight of action has resulted in well over 200 offences being detected, ranging from drivers not wearing seatbelts or having defective tyres through to people still using mobile phones whilst they're behind the wheel. Whilst the vast majority of drivers don't break the law, the success of this operation shows there are still some who think it's acceptable to put other road users' lives at risk because of how they behave. Our work doesn't stop here and we will be carrying out follow up operations over the coming months. We will also be out on major roads across Liverpool next week speaking to HGV drivers and cyclists' alike and giving advice on safety issues."

Traffic Commissioner for the North West of England and Senior Traffic Commissioner for Great Britain, Beverley Bell, welcomed the initiative. She said that:- "Some of the behaviour that has been captured by this excellent initiative is simple unacceptable. Drivers reported for these offences are warned they will be referred to the traffic commissioners, as we are responsible for their professional driving licences. We have the power to take action and driver can lose their licenses for 2 weeks in cases of mobile phone abuse. Overall, the commercial vehicle industry has a good record when it comes to abiding by the rules, so it is vital that the relevant enforcement agencies continue to target those who are needlessly putting other road users and themselves, at risk. By doing so they also damage the industry's image."

The following is the full list of offences and suspected offences across the 2 weeks of action in February 2014.

► 107 Traffic Offence Reports for use of mobile phones.

► 47 Traffic Offence Reports for failing to wear a seatbelt.

► 6 Traffic Offence Reports for defective tyres.

► 5 Traffic Offence Reports for failure to comply with red traffic signals.

► 15 Traffic Offence Reports for other offences.

► 17 Fixed Penalty Notices for various offences.

► 24 Roadworthiness Prohibitions.

► 4 Vehicles seized.

► 1 Summons regarding 5 defective tyres out of 6 on a vehicle.

► 1 person charged with a public order offence.

► £3300 of fines.

Yet more problems as Post Office is closed

LIKE us, the Champion was contacted, over concerns about what was being placed in the skip, outside the now closed Crown Post Office, last week.  According to some of our readers the bins and skips placed outside the building had personal material in them, and could be easily accessed by the public. when we attended we could see bags with files in, as you can see above, but opted not to open them. We tried to contact the number we had been given by workmen about the files, but the number was incorrect.  The Champion when they attended the skip, obtained several files, as they have reported.  All with personal information on. So what are your views about the closer and also the way the Post Office has handled it?  Email us to

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