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Last Updated: Wednesday, 31 August 2005, 13:44 GMT 14:44 UK
Hairdryers used to stop speeding
The villagers
Villagers say the dryers are slowing drivers down
The frustrated residents of one Dorset village have taken up an unusual weapon against speeding drivers - hairdryers.

Villagers are pretending the dryers are speed cameras as they stand on roadsides in Milborne St Andrew.

Complete with fluorescent jackets, the group have convinced motorists to obey the 30mph limit on the busy A354.

Their action comes after a long campaign by villagers to win safety measures for the road used by rat-runners from the A31.

I thought it was a great wheeze and four of us got together to do it - and it worked
Villager Richard Lock

Richard Lock, a former parish councillor who has lived in the village for the past six years, told the BBC News website: "I said we needed something done now and one of the residents said we should help the police out and put on fluorescent jerkins and use hairdryers.

"I thought it was a great wheeze and four of us got together to do it - and it worked.

"You could see them visibly slowing down as they caught sight of the fluorescent jerkins."

Mr Lock says a council survey in October last year showed 10,000 cars passed through the village in a seven-day period.

'Immediate ban'

About 1,800 were driving over 40mph and 6,900 were driving over 30mph.

"Five of them would have been banned immediately because they were doing over 60mph," Mr Lock said.

"What we are trying to do is get the council to do something and if we have to embarrass them and embarrass ourselves by using hairdryers then that seems an effective way.

"It's better than them doing nothing."

Cllr Malcolm Shakesby, who chairs the county council's roads and rights of way committee, said the local authority and the police had "limited resources".

But he added the villagers could purchase their own electronic Speed Indicator Device (Sid).

"From the point of view of the villagers I feel for their frustration but all the villages in Dorset that have speed restrictions suffer from the same problems of the level, density and volume of traffic," he added.

A spokeswoman for the council added: "We installed a temporary Sid in the village in October 2004 to remind drivers to drive appropriately through the village.

"We do take the villagers' concerns seriously, however, it has proved difficult to determine a solution that meets the villagers' expectations."

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29 Aug 05 |  Northamptonshire
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26 Aug 05 |  North Yorkshire

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