Broadstone Community Speed Watch – November 2020

‘Safer roads, safer community, safer Broadstone’

If you can count on one thing in this enlightened age it is that, when you make a considerable effort to provide accurate and up-to-date information to people and involve all of the key players to make sure that all the information is correct and true, the usual suspects react on Facebook and other social sites with false and misleading information!

It is apparent that some people cannot accept that the information published has been proof read and fact checked by all contributors before any information is released for public consumption.

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Broadstone Community Speed Watch – October 2020

Speed Limit change – Lower Blandford road

Community Speed Watch (CSW) monitoring is being conducted again on Lower Blandford road, from the Broadway to Darby’s Corner roundabout. As the Broadstone CSW (BCSW) team Coordinator I thought it might be helpful to remind road users that in the latter part of last year the speed limit on this stretch of road was reduced from 40 mph to 30 mph. Immediately following this change, and to allow road users to become familiar with a change of speed limit, a ‘period of grace’ was allowed before any Police speed enforcement or Community Speed Watch monitoring could be conducted.

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Speed Watch Q&As

True or false.

During a recent Speed Watch operation the CSW team were approached by a driver who made the following statements. This confirmed that there is a lot of misinformation and misunderstanding out there in terms of how CSW operate.

Below are some of the answers to some of the questions;

1. You are not authorised to do this are you?

False: The Chief Constable of Dorset Police has given his authority for Community Speed Watch teams to operate. Dorset Police oversee the scheme with officers working closely with the teams.

2. You are pretending to be Police Officers!

False: Community Speed Watch is a joint initiative run between the Police and members of the community but CSW volunteers have no powers of enforcement. The purpose of CSW is to support Dorset Police in raising awareness of the need to reduce speed.

3. You wear Hi-vis jackets to look like the Police?

False: The Hi-vis jackets are worn to make sure that CSW volunteers are highly visible to the driving public, both for their safety being stood at the roadside and that of other road users. The jackets have Community Speed Watch printed on them to avoid any confusion regarding the role.
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Broadstone Community Speed Watch – September 2020

‘Raising awareness, promoting road safety’

It is public knowledge that vehicle speeds on our national roads network increased significantly during the lock down period, and this continues to be an issue for all road users whether motorist, motorcyclist, cyclist or pedestrian. Broadstone is no exception!

At any other time this issue might be dealt with by a combination of increased Police Speed reduction activities and Community Speed Watch operations. However both organisations are being severely tested by the impact of Covid-19 on resources and increased workloads. This is certainly the case with Broadstone Community Speed Watch team which is currently reduced to operating with just seven volunteers.
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Broadstone Community Speed Watch – August 2020

‘Safer roads, safer community, safer Broadstone’

You will have seen in the national media that during the Corona virus lockdown numbers of vehicles observed being driven at unacceptably high speeds, and in some cases stopped by the Police, reached new levels. In view of this Dorset Police took the decision to authorise Community Speed Watch teams to redeploy on roads throughout the county.

You may have seen on the Broadstone Community Facebook page, the Broadstone Community Speed Watch Facebook and on the BCSW Twitter page that your Speed Watch team was commencing roadside operations from Monday 13th July 2020.

In the present circumstances much thought and consideration had to be given to the safety of not only our own volunteers, but also all of those with whom we might come into contact. The most visible outcomes being that volunteers operating at the roadside would practice social distancing rather that stand together as a group. Furthermore, to reduce risks from handling equipment the calibrated Speed gun is now mounted on a tripod.

From an operational point of view, and in the short term, the number of roadside operations are being limited to two a week, this to reduce demands on the small core of volunteers currently available. On a similar basis the number of roads, on which BCSW will be mounting operations, will be restricted to three. These roads are Pinesprings Drive, Higher and Lower Blandford Roads. Timing of operations will vary as previously.

The numbers of operations per week, and the number of roads to be monitored, will be regularly reviewed, and any changes to the current limitations will be published on the two Facebook pages mentioned above and on Twitter -Watch these spaces!

The pandemic has affected many in our community, and BCSW is no exception so we would ask that if you come to speak with us at the roadside please respect the social distancing guidelines. Let us all stay safe!

Finally, please remember that the principal aim of CSW is to raise awareness, educate and inform.

Please stay safe and drive considerately.

BCSW

Coronavirus

Please note that until Coronavirus restrictions are lifted BCSW (Broadstone Community Speed Watch) will do everything possible to comply with current Government guidelines. Right now the most obvious and visible  effect of the current guidelines on speedwatch operations will be that BCSW volunteers will be standing at least one meter apart when carrying out speedwatch sessions. BCSW volunteers will continue to wear yellow hi-vis jackets so will still be visible to road users.

Broadstone Community Speed Watch – July 2020

‘Safer roads, safer community, safer Broadstone’

In these challenging times I would like to pay tribute to a little recognised group of people, and these are our wonderful volunteers who have put the safety and welfare of others before their own. These volunteers fulfil a myriad of roles in support of the NHS, Care homes, the Police and Fire Services, Food banks, those most at risk and unable to leave their homes, and many more.

Some reading this article will be volunteering their services and will be giving their time and their energy freely, and without expecting any thanks or rewards.

Now, as a volunteer myself I can tell you that one aspect of volunteering is that it can be very satisfying on a personal level. In addition, knowing that you are doing something that benefits others can also be most rewarding.

This said I am mindful of the fact that when we have moved beyond the pandemic, and our lives have adjusted to the ‘new’ normal, it is almost certain that many of the roles currently filled by volunteers will cease to exist. It may also be that some of those volunteers may seek to continue to volunteer.

To this audience I would wish to draw the attention of Broadstone volunteers to the fact the your Broadstone Community Speed Watch team will be redeploying as soon as permission to do so is received from Dorset Police. I would also confirm that we too are reliant upon volunteers, and we will always extend a warm welcome anyone who might express an interest in what we do, and who might wish to join us in reducing risks associated with vehicles being driven at excessive speed on our local roads.

If you are interested, or if you would like to know more about what we do, you can contact us online by e-mail enquiries@broadstonecsw.uk, or have a look at our website www.broadstonecsw.uk or our BCSW Facebook page. BCSW also offer a ’try before you buy’ experience without any commitment required?

Meanwhile, please do stay safe and well.

BCSW

Dorset Community Speedwatch teams to recommence operations from mid July 2020

In mid March 2020 Dorset Police suspended all CSW operations due to the impact of Covid-19.

However, following the recent relaxation of some Covid-19 related restrictions Dorset Police have authorised CSW teams to redeploy week starting Monday 13th July 2020. Broadstone Community Speed Watch will redeploy on or soon after this date as authorised.

Please drive safely and considerately.

BCSW

Broadstone Community Speed Watch – June 2020

‘Safer roads, safer community, safer Broadstone’

When your Broadstone Community Speed watch team suspended their activities on the 20th March, a week or so before the official ‘Lockdown’, little was known about the challenges that lay ahead for all of us in the weeks to come.

One thing for sure is that we now cannot doubt that the cost, both in human and economic terms, is far in excess of anything we might have imagined.

Yet, it is in times such as these that we see the true good that exists in our society and in our nation. The amazing efforts of those brave and selfless members of our NHS and supporting services. The dedication and commitment of our Emergency services and others, and the thousands of volunteers who, regardless of the risks, have offered to help other less fortunate. In normal times it is easy to forget that such people and such acts of caring and kindness exist, and our attention is all too easily drawn to the less positive aspects of life and living in our modern tech filled world.

At the time of composing this article eyes are on the next steps on the road out of the current crisis, and the general consensus is that the path, to what we pray will be a full recovery, will be a long one.

That accepted there will undoubtedly be many new risks and challenges ahead as society emerges and moves to the ‘new’ normal, but emerge we will.

What does this mean for Broadstone Community Speed Watch? Without doubt it will be a case of when rather than if. Recent published statistics have shown that during the ‘Lockdown’ period there has been a worrying increase in the numbers of vehicles being driven at excessively high speeds. This may in part be  an unintended consequence of reduced traffic volumes and clearer roads, but will need to be addressed when schools, business and normal operations resume. Notice of any resumption of our activities will be published at the appropriate time.

Stay safe and stay well,

BCSW

 

Broadstone Community Speed Watch – May 2020

‘Safer roads, safer community, safer Broadstone’

Writing an article each month is sometimes a challenge in itself but the unexpected arrival of the Corona Virus has changed the editorial landscape completely. We are now are now facing challenges that months ago would have been unthinkable, and we can only rely on our Government, our medical experts, our most valiant NHS, and ourselves to get through this difficult period. If ever there was a time for us all to put our differences aside, and to work together for the common good, then I suggest this is the time.

With this in mind and in these circumstances, and to avoid adding any additional or unnecessary pressure or stress on our travelling public, Broadstone Community Speed Watch has ceased all CSW operations until further notice, and the two ‘Meet the Public’ events planned for April and May cancelled.

This aside, BCSW continue to lead the league table for CSW operations across the County, and we have been making considerable progress in reducing the numbers of speeding vehicles on our local roads.

In addition, and as mentioned in our April article, we have a PowerPoint presentation that we can present to organisations and groups who might wish to know more about our activities. We have so far provided this service to two organisations, and both presentations were well received.

Dorset Police continue to support CSW by developing policies, procedures, operational guidelines, training and supervision, to ensure that CSW teams carry out their roles responsibly, with the aim of maintaining public confidence in this joint initiative.

As always BCSW needs help from you, our residents, to keep a downward pressure on the numbers of speeding vehicles on our local roads., and you can do this by volunteering to join us. So do have a look at our website www.broadstonecsw.uk, fill in the contact form, attend one of our sessions on a ‘try before you buy’ basis, or come and talk to us at the roadside. Any and all enquiries will be warmly welcomed.

Finally, stay safe, stay well and keep healthy.

BCSW