|“The wrong managers”|
“I am a RPU (not Traffic) sergeant in West Midlands. Every day I see appallingly bad driving and poorly maintained vehicles. The consequences of these is deaths on the roads. Last October, for example, we had 4 fatal and 2 very serious injury accidents. This was akin to 4 murder investigations being run simultaneously by one sergeant and 8 constables.
I believe there are three reasons for the state we are in. The first is the low priority given at both national and local level, to all traffic policing matters. I know ACPO now accepts this, but things have gone too far to be fixed in a hurry and a few words in the National Policing Plan. We do not enforce traffic legislation. BCU commanders concentrate resources on national targets set by the Government. There is only one “traffic” key performance indicator: reducing fatal and serious injury accidents.
Secondly, the public has become alienated from the police. The public supported “traffic cops” even if they were wary, because they could see the value of our work. Speed cameras have made the police the enemy of the motorist, even if we have nothing to do with them. They are seen as the police making money.
My third reason is the current standard of police driving. Most Panda drivers have only a one-day test involving 2 hours driving, in place of the old 4 weeks course. Yet the public expects a Panda driver to be a first class driver, and have the best and most powerful cars on the roads.”
Un-named police officer writing in
POLICE [pdf 463k]
(The newspaper of the Police Federation)