Eastleigh Police are looking for community volunteers to help motorists respect local speed limits.
Officers held a meeting at the Civic Offices earlier this month to explain to councillors and members of the public how they could help improve road safety by joining a community speedwatch team.
Each team will consist of six community volunteers prepared to spend a couple of hours a week.
The teams will only be observing local roads where speeds limits are 30 mph or less and in locations where residents have told the police they think there is speeding problem.
These are roads that would not normally be monitored for speeding by police units – for example housing estate rat runs.
The volunteers would use ‘passive, non-threatening’ speed detectors (i.e not hand held radar guns) to log the speed of passing traffic and note details of any vehicles exceeding the limit.
Owners of vehicles caught speeding would then receive a letter from police asking them to respect the limit in future, warning them that if they were subsequently caught again – then action could follow.
Drivers approaching a speedwatch checkpoint will see warning signs and have ample opportunity to reduce their speed.
Police say the emphasis is on education rather than enforcement.
“We want to foster a culture of speed awareness in Hampshire”
Sgt Phil Lamb explained while also denying suggestions that the use of civilian volunteers was an attempt by cash strapped Hampshire constabulary to get traffic policing on the cheap.
“Although there have been cuts to the budget we are actually putting more resources into speed enforcement”
He explained that feedback reported by beat officers showed that cars speeding through residential streets were one of the top three concerns members of the public had, along with Anti-Social Behaviour.
Speaking at the end of the meeting Sergeant Chris Spellerberg told how Eastleigh’s Safer Neighbourhoods team had recently been working alongside Hampshire Roads Policing Unit to enforce the 30 mph speed and 7.5 tonne weight limit on Twyford Road directly in response to residents’ concerns.
Several people attending the meeting expressed an interest in volunteering for the scheme including Eastleigh councillors Chris Thomas and Keith Trenchard.
Successful applicants will be fully trained by the Police.
If you are interested in helping out and would like further information on email: