POLICE officers pulled up 17 drivers during its annual road safety day. 

Officers working from Taunton Deane services took part in the safety day as part of Op Tramline. 

The day saw intensified patrols along the M5 corridor around Taunton and Exeter. 

Tri Force officers from Avon and Somerset, Gloucestershire and Wiltshire were out in marked and unmarked vehicles, targeting drivers breaking the law on our roads.

The risks of dangerous driving were explained to offenders and they were also issued penalties or prosecuted where appropriate.

Compulsory education sessions were also run in Taunton Deane Service station by Devon and Somerset Fire and Rescue and Somerset Road Safety who provided professional, practical advice alongside the police.

Officers pulled over drivers for the following reasons:

  • 7 for excess speed
  • 2 cars seized no insurance
  • 3 no MOT
  • 2 for using a mobile phone
  • 2 defective vehicles
  • 1 HGV driver dealt with for driving hours offences

Superintendent Andy Williams, head of road safety at Avon and Somerset Police said: “Dangerous driving puts your life and the lives of others at risk.

"It’s easy for drivers to make mundane excuses for checking their phone, speeding or not wearing a seatbelt, but these dangerous habits needlessly endanger other road users.

"Take a moment, consider these risks and think about small changes you can make to improve your driving.”

Avon and Somerset police says the M5 is one of the most important roads in the region and they are committed to making it safer for drivers.

Their work spans from road safety interventions such as Op Tramline to regular law enforcement and traffic management activity.

In 2017, police attended 100 ‘injury collisions’ along the M5 which resulted in 248 casualties. Of these casualties, 6 per cent were either fatal or classified as serious. Many of these collisions were caused by one of the ‘fatal four’ which are the most common causes of accidents on our roads.

The fatal four are widely recognised as the following:

  • Inappropriate speed - According to road safety charity THINK!, just a few miles per hour can mean the difference between life and death. Make sure that you’re driving at the appropriate speed for the conditions at all times and never exceed the speed limit.
  • Distraction - Using a mobile phone at the wheel is illegal, even while stopped with the engine on. Legislation introduced in March 2017 means those caught can receive six points on their licence and a £200 fine or new drivers could have their license taken away. Put your phone out sight in your bag or on the back seat and make sure you’re focussed on the road.
  • Not wearing a seatbelt - You’re twice as likely to die in a crash if you don’t wear a seatbelt according to THINK!. Most modern cars are fitted with an electronic reminder and no matter how long/short the journey is, there is no excuse – put on your seatbelt before you drive.
  • Drink/drug driving – Intoxication reduces a driver's ability to drive safely by reducing reaction times, increasing fatigue and impairing judgement. Often it is an innocent person who suffers during a collision, not the driver who is over the drink drive limit.

Officers are encouraging members of the public to report any dangerous driving and send dashcam footage to us via our website. Information from any reports they are unable to respond to will be fed into future investigations and intelligence for ongoing road safety management.

If you see a driver breaking the law on the road, you can repot them online at https://www.avonandsomerset.police.uk/contact-us/report-a-crime-or-incident/