Surround a Town: a brilliant example of partnership working

The first two Surround a Town events of the year have seen the Safer Essex Roads Partnership (SERP) deliver important road safety messages to nearly 1,000 members of the public.

Organised by SERP, Surround a Town sees resources focussed on a tight geographical area, where there are high rates of collisions and casualties.

Surround a Town uses a combination of enforcement and engagement to highlight the importance of safe and legal driving.

The first event of the year took place in Colchester on 13 January, where SERP officers from the road safety team and the Essex County Fire and Rescue Service engaged with 650 members of the public at Culver Square and Colchester Town Hall, delivering vital messages.

Those who engaged with a member of the SERP road safety team received a free tote bag, promoting the county’s Vision Zero aim to have no road deaths and serious injuries in the Essex, Southend and Thurrock council areas by 2040.

In terms of enforcement, the Colchester Surround a Town saw officers from Essex Police detect more than 30 offences, including 18 seatbelt offences, two for careless driving and one for a failed drugwipe.

From Colchester to Witham

Looking to build on this success, the Surround a Town team visited Witham on 18 January.

The team set up outside Morrisons supermarket – speaking to more than 250 members of the public.

An additional 21 people were engaged with at enforcement sites, where a raft of offences were also detected, including 19 seatbelt offences, five mobile phone offences and an arrest for a failed drugwipe.

SERP believes Surround a Town, which has been running for a number of years, is a brilliant example of joined up partnership working.

Among the other activities which typically take place during a Surround a Town event are Community Speedwatch sessions – where members of the community come together to monitor speeds of vehicles in their local area, with support from the police.

School pupils also get involved in speed awareness activities and during the Witham Surround a Town, 13 speeding vehicles were stopped by a police officer on Cressing Road near Beckers Green School and offered an opportunity to interact with a group of pupils as an alternative to prosecution.

More Surround a Town events are planned throughout Essex in 2022. If one is happening in your town, and you’d like to find out more about our Vision Zero aim, please come and talk to us.

24 January 2022

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