Operation Everest: Tackling issues raised by local communities

FIVE motorists were issued with on-the-spot fines after being caught exceeding the 30mph speed limit in Battishorne Way, Honiton, during a high profile police day of action in the town.

FIVE motorists were issued with on-the-spot fines after being caught exceeding the 30mph speed limit in Battishorne Way, Honiton, during a high profile police day of action in the town.

Pc Ian Atyeo, neighbourhood beat manager, and PCSO Sue Rowe conducted the operation last Wednesday as part of the force-wide Operation Everest.

Using an UltraLyte laser speed gun, Pc Atyeo later carried out speed checks in Kings Road, Dowell Street, Awliscombe and Whitebridges - areas all pinpointed by residents as speeding hot-spots.

The day of action targeted concerns raised through the Partners and Communities Together (PACT) initiative, which allows the public to help police prioritise some of their work.


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In Kings Road, where campaigners have won their case for a reduced speed limit, PCSO Rowe chatted to Councillor Dianne Morgan and Janice Sharman, who spearheaded a wider safety campaign for the A35 almost three years ago.

Mrs Sharman says she has noted vehicles travelling at up to 60mph in Kings Road.

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During the speed check, however, the highest speed was recorded as 40mph - the maximum currently allowed on the road.

"When they make this a 30mph zone, it will be interesting," said Pc Atyeo. He added: "Sometimes, it's about people's perceptions of speed.

"Although cars may look as though they are going fast, many aren't.

"But, you can guarantee the cars coming one way will be flashing to cars coming the other way - to warn them we are here."

The Herald asked: "That's illegal, isn't it?"

Pc Atyeo replied: "It is illegal, but you've got to catch them doing it."

The speed gun could detect a vehicle's speed from a whopping 279 metres away, from Hale Lane to Copper Castle, and Pc Atyeo says its range is even more extensive than that.

He said: "We don't 'ping' every car. We only use the speed gun to verify a vehicle's speed, if we think it may be exceeding the speed limit."

Rural beat manager Pc Clive Vickery and PCSO Phil Anning also took part in Operation Everest, visiting businesses in Dunkeswell to promote a free community messaging scheme following a series of thefts.

Evening patrols in Honiton tackled the nuisance of anti-social driving.

Pc Jo Arundale said: "Several warnings were issued in reference to noisy exhausts, with the owners being given 21 days to comply with the appropriate legislation.

"If they fail to comply, they will be issued with fines.

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