MP call for action on speed loopholes

SUFFOLK MP Richard Spring is demanding urgent Government action to stop speeding drivers escaping punishment.The Tory member for West Suffolk is calling for Transport Secretary Alistair Darling to sort out a mess which means police are unable to prosecute offending motorists because of legal problems with some 30mph road signs.

SUFFOLK MP Richard Spring is demanding urgent Government action to stop speeding drivers escaping punishment.

The Tory member for West Suffolk is calling for Transport Secretary Alistair Darling to sort out a mess which means police are unable to prosecute offending motorists because of legal problems with some 30mph road signs.

Police have uncovered inconsistencies in sections of the Road Traffic Regulation Act making it virtually impossible to monitor speeding and enforce the 30mph limits through many Suffolk villages.

Suffolk police have written to the Department of Transport seeking advice on the lawfulness of the signs but the response is said to have raised "more questions than answers".

Mr Spring said the force and the county council – both concerned by the "impasse" - were still waiting for clarification from the Government. The MP said villagers in the dozens of communities affected by the problem deserved to have it sorted out.

In his letter to Mr Darling he said: "Residents are in constant fear of accidents, because of the lack of effective speed monitoring, especially as winter approaches.

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"I would therefore ask for your personal assurance that this matter will be dealt with urgently. Many villages in my constituency suffer road problems as a result of speeding and increased volume of traffic.

"I cannot emphasise how seriously I take this issue – many of my constituents' lives are blighted by speeding vehicles. I very much hope you can bring clarity to what has become a complex and uncertain set of circumstances."

Peter Thompson, director of environment and transport at Suffolk County Council, said the authority was working closely with the police and the transport department to clarify "certain legal technicalities" regarding the enforcement of 30mph speed limits in Suffolk villages.

"We have been waiting for a response from the Department of Transport so we welcome Mr Spring's letter as we are keen to resolve this issue as soon as possible.

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