Drivers receive advice on seat belts and child car seats


Southend-on-Sea drivers were given advice on a range of safety related issues including child car seats and the importance of wearing a seat belt, at a special event in the town last week.

The ‘Surround-a Town’ (SAT) event, organised by SERP, took place at two locations on the A13 and A127 on Wednesday 8 July. SAT events are held regularly across Essex, Southend-on-Sea and Thurrock.

In all, Essex Police detected 177 driving offences during the day, 109 of which related to not wearing a seat belt. 22 drivers were also caught using a hand held mobile phone.

Peter Swanwick, Southend-on-Sea’s road safety officer, said: “At one site police stopped vehicles carrying children to enable our road safety officer with expert knowledge about in-car safety to check the suitability and fitting of child seats, and give advice to drivers.

“At the other site it was mainly commercial vehicles that were stopped because the drivers were not wearing seatbelts.”

southend-surround2One driver was not allowed to drive away until he had replaced two almost bald tyres, and in another incident the driver had ‘borrowed’ his boss’s car without permission or a licence; as a consequence he was arrested and the car seized.

Excuses offered up by drivers not wearing a seat belt included: ‘I forgot’, ‘I usually do’, ‘I am only doing a short journey’ and I have just put it on’ (while travelling at 40mph!).

One driver stopped for being on the phone justified this by saying she was receiving a call from her child’s school – and wanted to go to court to argue her case!

Peter Swanwick added: “Road safety officers were at both sites to remind drivers why it is important to make sure they and all their passengers wear a seatbelt, by showing a short video reconstruction of a triple fatal collision where one of the passengers not wearing a seatbelt caused fatal injuries to the driver and two other passengers.

“Drivers were also reminded that it is unlikely their insurance company will pay out for personal injury if they are not wearing a seatbelt, and employers are unlikely to pay any sick pay for time off.”

16 July 2015

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