Coronavirus: North Yorkshire Police use HGV to tackle bad driving during lockdown

An unmarked HGV has been used by police in North Yorkshire to tackle bad driving.

  • North Yorkshire Police have been using an unmarked HGV to tackle bad driving during the virus lockdown. 
  • The truck has been travelling key routes as part of 'Operation Tramline'.
  • Officers have been using it to give them a vantage point.

The truck has been travelling key routes as part of 'Operation Tramline', with officers using it to give them a vantage point. Motorists can then be pulled over by marked units and the driver dealt with. The operation began on 1st June and covered key routes around the county.

Highways England lends the lorry cab to police forces around the country, to help them keep the roads safe. Police said the driving they observed by the vast majority of road users was "overwhelmingly responsible".

However, a number of drivers have been dealt with for various incidents detected by the operation. These include:

  • A tractor driver, who shouldn't even have been on the motorway, driving while using a mobile phone who still had alcohol in his system from a previous night of drinking.
  • A European-registered HGV with extensive collision damage which the driver was intending on driving to Dover.

    The vehicle was prohibited by colleagues from DVSA and he was issued on the spot fines of GBP900.

  • A van driver who was observed using his mobile phone on one day and three days later stopped again for driving his vehicle in a dangerously overloaded condition.
  • A disqualified driver, driving an overweight van and trailer and using his phone at the same time.
  • Drivers of various vehicles seen reading/checking paperwork whilst driving on the motorway.
  • Various drivers seen talking on their phones, some completely oblivious to the fact that they were being recorded.

Traffic Constable Mark Patterson who organised the operation said:

"By using the unmarked truck on loan from Highways England, we can check all drivers are following the rules of the road and not doing anything that could distract them, such as using a handheld mobile phone. "HGV, van and coach drivers are professionals, but even the professionals make mistakes sometimes, which can have catastrophic results in such a heavy vehicle. It is important to note however that this operation was not designed to target HGV drivers and in fact the results show that equal number of goods and private vehicles were dealt with.

"Op Tramline has seen us deploy to numerous locations.

And I'm pleased to say that while we did deal with a number of offences, the driving we've observed has been overwhelmingly responsible, safe and legal, especially from those in the haulage sector.

"It's further testament to how well these key workers have helped keep the country going during lockdown."

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