All posts by Sarah Richardson

Warwickshire Police increases patrols of the roads to target drivers under the influence of drugs or alcohol

Officers have increased their presence on Warwickshire’s roads to coincide with the football World Cup and lead up to Christmas in order to target and catch drink and drug drivers.

All drivers who are involved in a collision will also be asked to provide a roadside breath test and drug swipe.

As part of the drink drug drive enforcement activities, officers are encouraging the public to report the details of suspected drink or drug drivers to them by calling 101 or in an emergency 999.

As a further deterrent Warwickshire Police will be publicising the details of all arrests and charges from 21 November up to and including 1 January 2023 including those detailed below.

Inspector Jem Mountford said “If you are going out drinking with your friends to a Christmas party or to enjoy the World Cup, make sure you plan ahead and agree a nominated driver or pre book a taxi home.

“Drinking and driving is not worth the risk to your job, life and reputation as there is a high risk of being stopped and arrested with an increased police presence on the roads to target and catch drink and drug drivers.”

The penalties for drink and drug driving are wide ranging and if tests find you are over the limit you are likely to be charged and given a court date where you are likely to lose your driving licence, be imprisoned and face a fine. The true cost to drivers and families who lose loved ones is much greater.

Sentences have increased recently and if you cause death by careless driving whilst under the influence of drink or drugs you could be sentenced to 14 years with a minimum two year driving ban and extended retest.

These sentences reflect the seriousness of drink and drug driving and the far-reaching consequences for the victim’s family who will never get their loved one back.

During the operation, officers will also be referring suspected drink and drug drivers to support services in Warwickshire for help and support. If you are addicted to drink or drugs, you can also self refer.

Officers have made the following arrests and charges since the operation started on Monday 21 November:-

Police arrested a 52 year old man from Bedworth on suspicion of drink driving and assault after they were called to an incident in the early hours of 24 November and arrested the man on suspicion of drink driving in New Common Road, Bedworth when he failed a roadside breath test.  He is currently in police custody awaiting questioning.

A 39 year old man from Rugby was arrested at 10.17 hours on 23 November in King Edward Road, Rugby after officers were called to reports of a collision.  The 39 year old was later charged with drink driving and driving without a licence and is due to appear before Warwickshire Magistrates on 13 January 2023.

A 51 year old man from Wellesbourne was arrested at 1400 hours on 22 November in Newbold Place, Wellesbourne following a minor injury road traffic collision.  On officer arrival he failed a roadside breath test and was later charged with drink driving and driving without a licence. He is due to appear before Warwickshire Magistrates on 13 January 2023.

A 33 year old woman from Coventry was arrested at 21.30 hours on 22 November in Vicarage Street, outside Nuneaton Police Station after officers stopped the vehicle to check its MOT status.  The driver failed a roadside drugs test and was arrested.  She was later Released Under Investigation pending further enquiries.

Officers arrested a 79 year old man from Bedworth on suspicion of drink driving and failing to stop when they were called to a collision where a vehicle had collided with numerous vehicles in Acacia Crescent, Bedworth at 00.50 hours on 21 November. He failed a roadside breath test and was later charged to appear before Warwickshire Magistrates on 13 January 2023.

A 41 year old man from Henley-in-Arden was arrested at 19.17 hours on 20 November on suspicion of drink driving after his vehicle was in collision with a tree near Little Alne, Alcester.  He failed a roadside breath test and was later charged to appear at Warwickshire Magistrates Court on 13 January 2023.

Officers stopped a white VW Golf at 23.22hours on 20 November on Salford Road Bidford upon Avon, concerned about the manner of driving.  The driver, a 51 year old man from Weston-Super-Mare failed a road side breath test and was charged with drink driving to appear before Warwickshire Magistrates on 13 January 2023.

Alongside operational activity, Warwickshire Police will be sharing awareness campaigns including the THINK Pint Block campaign asking mates not to let a mate drink drive and a new behavioural change campaign developed by Surrey Police and Sussex Police that challenges people not to be a bystander to drink driving.

You can follow the campaign on social media @WarksRoadSafety (Twitter) and WarwickshireRoadSafety (Facebook)

Warwickshire Police catch 4,680 drivers speeding in two week NPCC operation

Warwickshire Police has revealed that a total of 4,680 drivers were caught speeding in the county during an anti speeding campaign that took place in October 2022.

In just a two week period, starting on 17 October 2022, on average 334 drivers were caught speeding every single day.  This equates to 14 drivers caught speeding every hour, every day of the 14 day operation.

This was achieved not only from the static speed cameras on Warwickshire’s roads and motorways but also through our camera enforcement vans and speed gun devices, with officers being deployed across our road network.

So far 3,897 drivers who were eligible, have been offered a driver educational course.

To date 74 drivers are facing prosecution, this will be by means of a fine and points or the driver placed before the Magistrates to be dealt with. This may be because their speed was excessive or they are repeat offenders or they have more than 12 points on their licence.

The remainder of the speeding offences are still being processed.

Some examples of extreme excessive speeding offences recorded during the campaign are as follows

30 drivers were caught doing 100+mph on the M6 in Warwickshire, with the highest speed being 133mph.

3 drivers were caught doing 100+ mph on the M42, with the highest speed being 116mph.

9 drivers were caught doing 100+mph on the M40, with the highest speed being 118mph

54 drivers were caught exceeding the 30mph limits in residential zones where there are more pedestrians including children, with speeds recorded of 58 and 51mph.

A massive 2,928 drivers were caught exceeding the temporary 50mph speed restrictions put in place in roadworks for the safety of workers on the roads. It is not acceptable to put workers lives at risk like this.

Operations to catch speeding drivers took place across the county, from residential areas including Stratford town, Rugby including Lower Hillmorton Road, Ansley Common Bedworth, Church Road Shustoke, Kenilworth and Lillington Road to major routes such as the A444 Nuneaton, A46 Snitterfield, A46 Leamington Spa, North Warwickshire and M6, M42 and M40.

In addition, the county’s Community Speed Watch (CSW) volunteers were also out in force during the operation across the county.  Seventeen CSW Groups were involved and during the two week operation the speed of 4,316 drivers was checked as they went through CSW check sites during the monitoring sessions.  Of these 272 drivers were speeding at over 35+mph in a 30mph zone or 46+mph in a 40mph limit.  All 272 drivers will receive Warning letters from Warwickshire Police to help educate drivers to reduce their speeds. However, in cases where education is ignored and there is evidence of repeat or excessive offences, even across county borders, enforcement and prosecution will follow.

Chief Inspector Faz Chishty said 

“Whilst the majority of drivers drive safely within the speed limit, there continue to be a few drivers who chose to risk their safety and that of other road users including cyclists, pedestrians and children by speeding.  Some risk the lives of their passengers who may be children, loved ones or friends.

“In some cases, drivers received words of advice from our officers about their decision to speed.

“Those that were eligible were offered a speed awareness course giving them an opportunity to change their behaviour.  This has a direct effect on road safety because we know that those who go on a training course are less likely to reoffend in the next 6 months after the course.

“We are determined to reduce collisions, deaths and injuries on our roads and  enforcing speed limits has been proven to do just this. Our officers will therefore continue to proactively target those irresponsible and dangerous drivers who choose to drive above the speed limit.

WRSP Chair and Police and Crime Commissioner for Warwickshire Philip Seccombe said 

“Whilst education and enforcement play an important part in changing the behaviours of speeding drivers, we will only be able to reduce death and injury on our roads significantly if drivers take responsibility for road safety too by driving safely within the speed limit at an appropriate speed for the conditions.

“People need not die on our roads and only by working together in this way can we achieve the ambitious target of a 50% reduction in road deaths and serious injuries in Warwickshire by 2030 and make our roads safer for everyone.”

Stratford Energy Support Fund Now Open

THE STRATFORD ENERGY SUPPORT FUND 2022
FINANCIAL HELP WITH ENERGY BILLS

The scheme is administered and managed by Act on Energy on behalf of Stratford-on-Avon District Council who are offering financial support this winter for vulnerable households within the district who are struggling to pay their energy bills.

WHO IS ELIGIBLE FOR THE SCHEME?
All homeowners, private rented tenants and housing association/Council tenants, can apply or be referred for fuel vouchers or fuel payments if they:
1. Live in the Stratford on Avon district; Alcester, Bidford-on-Avon, Quinton, Sambourne, Shipston-on-Stour, Southam, Stratford-upon-Avon, Studley, Upper Lighthorne and Wellesbourne & Walton,
2. Have a combined gross household income of no more than £30,000.00 per year
3. Have no household savings
4. Have someone living in the home with a vulnerability (see list below)

If you satisfy ALL the 4 criteria above, you can apply for support through the Stratford Energy Support Fund.

Applications will also be taken through referrals from recognised community and voluntary organisations, including Citizens Advice, Stratford District Council, Foodbanks, Housing Associations, professional health and family services, Age UK, schools etc.

WHAT HELP IS AVAILABLE?
Financial support with fuel vouchers and fuel energy payment. This is a one-off payment.
When applying for Fuel Vouchers or Fuel Payment you will need to provide the following details:
• gas or electric supplier on the online application form including your energy supplier’s name and account number (referee must have seen this energy bill)
• Council Tax reference number, telephone number, date of birth, tenure, vulnerability, benefits, method of energy payment, will also be needed to when making the application.

Please make sure the energy account details are accurate. If they are incorrect the payment will be void and may not be able to be redeemed.

HOW WILL THE PAYMENT BE MADE?
FUEL VOUCHERS – If you use a key or a card to top-up your pre-payment meter you will be issued with Paypoint or Post Office Vouchers. A letter will be sent in the post to your address, containing the fuel voucher codes with instructions on how to redeem them.
FUEL PAYMENTS – A one-off payment onto your gas or electricity account, (select 1 fuel type only, when completing the application form), for:
• those paying by direct debit or
• on receipt of bill or
• direct to their supplier

HOW MUCH WILL I RECEIVE?
Families with under children under 18 (or up to age 21 in full time education), will receive £500 via direct payment to their energy supplier or 9 x £49 pre-payment vouchers for those paying by key or card.
Single households or couples will receive £300 via direct payment to their energy supplier or 6 x £49 pre-payment vouchers for those paying by key or card.

HOW TO APPLY
You can, or a partner referrer can, apply online by completing the application form link at the bottom of the page.
Before applying please be aware that:
1. There is no guarantee of support.
2. The funding is available until 31st March 2023 but it is limited and will be withdrawn once all funds have been allocated, which may be sooner than March 2023.
3. This is not an emergency scheme and it may take several days for the payments to be made onto your account.
4. No money will be paid directly to applicants.
5. You will have to confirm on the application form that you meet the above qualifying criteria.
6. Details of those who apply will be stored by Act on Energy in line with our privacy policy which can be found at: GDPR & Privacy Policy – Act On Energy

To register a client for the fund please complete and submit the ‘Online Expression of Interest form’ at https://actonenergy.org.uk/project/energy-support-fund/
For any other queries please contact 0800 988 2881

Two Christmas Events

Two popular events are returning to Avon Dassett this December:

Christmas Carol Concert, Sunday 18 December

Traditional carols and readings at St Joseph’s Roman Catholic Church

1730: Meet at Avon Carrow for refreshments

1800: Carol Concert at St Joseph’s

1900: Meet up with friends at The Yew Tree

Sing-along with Sally and her Band, Tuesday 21 December

Sing along to popular Xmas tunes with Sally and her brilliant band at The Yew Tree from 1730.

Help with Energy Costs Available

Residents living within Warwickshire might be eligible for funding to help with energy costs (subject to eligibility and availability). The following grants are currently open for new applicants:

Warwickshire Household Support Fund

Households with a combined gross household income of no more than £30,000.00 per year, no household savings and someone living with a vulnerability, may be eligible for:

  • Financial support toward current energy debts only
  • Assistance to repair or replace broken boilers and heating systems
  • Financial support to top up an oil or LPG tank (not bottles)

Further details here WARWICKSHIRE HOUSEHOLD SUPPORT FUND 2022 – Act On Energy

Warm & Well in Warwickshire

Owner occupiers/private rented households with cold related health conditions and in receipt of certain benefits/low income may be eligible for:

  • Emergency Heater Scheme
  • Grants for Boiler Replacements
  • Grants for Boiler Servicing & Repairs
  • Loft and Cavity Wall Insulation Grants

More details here Warm & Well in Warwickshire – inc Grants – Act On Energy

Energy Efficiency Grant

Owner occupiers with a gross household income of less than £30,000 year  OR  someone in your home receives a means tested benefit AND a home that has an EPC rating of D, E, F or G (if you don’t have an EPC then this will be arranged for you if we think that your property is energy inefficient) may be eligible for:

  • Solar PV panels
  • Loft insulation
  • Cavity wall insulation
  • External wall insulation
  • Air source heat pumps
  • Smart heating controls

To find out more, please complete an Expression of Interest form here ENERGY EFFICIENCY GRANT SCHEME – Act On Energy

 

For more information call us on 0800 988 2881 or visit the website www.actonenergy.org.uk or email: alvynne@actonenergy.org.uk