Greater Manchester Police continues to crackdown on drivers flouting the law by taking part in Operation Tramline, a national initiative targeting dangerous and antisocial behaviour behind the wheel, using an unmarked HGV (Heavy Good Vehicle).
A total of 239 driving offences were recorded by traffic officers during the 12 day operation (4 – 16 December) and included; watching TV on a mobile phone, texting, eating noodles and driving without due care and attention.
Working in partnership with Highways England, officers patrolled the Greater Manchester motorway network, filming the driving habits of motorists to detect and prevent road offences.
From the elevated position of the HGV cab, observations included 57 hand-held mobile phone offences and 56 drivers failing to wear a seatbelt. Thirty two drivers committed motorway verge offences (crossing chevrons), while 10 motorists were stopped for driving without due care and attention.
The operation resulted in five people being arrested, 179 traffic offence reports being issued and 30 fixed penalty notices issued to both UK and foreign drivers.
Chief Inspector Tariq Butt, from GMP’s Traffic Unit said: “Drivers continue to put themselves and others at risk when they are not in full control of their vehicle so Operation Tramline is crucial in raising awareness of a driver’s responsibilities and keeping our road networks safe at all times.
“Taking your eyes off the road, even for a second can have serious consequences, so be sure to remove any distraction. Secure your seatbelt before driving, keep your phone out of sight and keep your eyes on the road at all times.”
During the operation two motorway vehicles followed the HGV at distance to stop offenders. Drivers that could not be stopped were recorded and are being dealt with via a conditional offer in the postal system.
Anthony Thorpe, Highways England Incident Prevention Team Advisor, said: “The vast majority of drivers pay attention when they’re on the motorway but a minority are putting themselves and others at risk by not driving safely.
“The HGV cab project has been patrolling motorways and major a roads over the past couple of years and by working with police forces across the country, we’re making a real difference to help improve road safety and we’re pleased that the initiative is helping to protect motorists. We will continue to use the HGV cab to tackle deaths and serious injuries and to encourage people to improve how they drive.
“Doing what we can to reduce incidents on our network not only improves safety but it reduces congestion and provides more reliable journeys for the four million customers that use our motorways and trunk roads each day.”
Watch the Operation Tramline video here