We were regarded as the spawn of the devil by some
ABRAHAM Lincoln was once misquoted as saying "you can please some people all of the time and all of the people some of the time but you can't please all of the people all of the time". In our job this can, at times seem so true.
This week we have been taking action about an issue recently raised at one of the quarterly Fishponds PAT meetings.
It was requested by the majority of people there that their local beat team looked at enforcing the no left turn from Fishponds Road into Hockeys Lane.
This was brought into force following the introduction of the Showcase bus route along the main Fishponds Road to enable pedestrians to cross the road at this junction safely and promote the easy passage of the local buses.
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It was deemed necessary to no longer allow vehicles to turn left at this junction past the Morrison's store.
Initially signs were slow in being put up. Therefore there was little, if any, action the police could take. But over the last few months this was eventually corrected.
Adequate signs were put into place and we began a short period of education, whereby motorists who disobeyed the road sign and were caught were issued with stern words of advice and reminded of their responsibility to adhere to the Highway Code.
It was then that a decision was made to begin vigorous enforcement and so one sunny morning myself and several PCSOs made our way to the location in our bright shiny fluorescent jackets. We began to stop motorists who had contravened the no left turn signs. We were to allow no discretion. The road sign was clear and anyone caught contravening the sign was to be issued with £30 fixed penalty notice.
Within an hour period we had issued 16 fixed penalty notices to both men and women drivers, ranging in age from 19-79. And we were regarded as the spawn of the devil by some of them.
We were asked why we were not catching real criminals instead of persecuting innocent motorist.
But we were congratulated by environmentally friendly eco warriors and pedestrians alike who stated they have to regularly take their lives into their own hands to avoid getting run down by inconsiderate motorists.
Did I feel good about how I had spent the last hour? Well to be honest yes and no.
I am not one who enjoys traffic legislation per say but as a police officer I act on the concerns of the local residents. So to those who called for enforcement rest assured we have listened to your concerns and taken action.
To the motorists who complained may I suggest that you attend your next quarterly PAT meeting and then you too will have a voice and be able to set our priorities for the next three months.