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Wednesday, 30 January, 2002, 17:23 GMT
Police chief's call to cut speeding
Tougher measures are being urged on road safety
One of Wales's police chiefs has called for tougher measures to help reduce the number of road accidents caused by speeding motorists.

The Chief Constable of North Wales Police Richard Brunstrom outlined his ideas on road safety to MPs at Westminster on Wednesday.

Chief Constable of North Wales Richard Brunstrom
Chief Constable Richard Brunstrom: 'Cultural shift'

He gave evidence to the Commons transport committee about measures to make drivers keep within the law.

The chief constable said a "cultural shift " in drivers' attitudes towards speeding had to be achieved in the same way that drink-driving had been curbed over the last 25 years.

"What we are trying to achieve is a shift so they have nothing to do with us, so they don't get prosecuted and more people stay alive," said Mr Brunstrom.

According to research from the RAC, said Mr Brunstom most drivers believed in measures to reduce speed on the road - but then chose to ignore those measures.

"Why is it that people believe in road safety and then drive too fast?" he asked.

He has been behind moves to increase the number of speed cameras across his force area which has seen an increase in the number of drivers receiving fines.

Speed camera
Speed camers have led to increased fines

Among the methods of tightening up road safety favoured by Mr Brunstrom is the introduction of speed limiters to stop cars going faster than 70 miles per hour.

Mr Brunstrom, who once admitted to driving a little too fast on occasions, is also the traffic spokesman for the Association of Chief Police Officers.

He said improvements in safety and vehicle design over the last 15 years had given the UK the best safety record in Europe.

Traffic slowing

"But the real issue is people driving within the law and that is a personal choice," he said.

While this is the first of its planned inquiries into speeding, the committee has already commissioned a variety of reports into traffic slowing measures.

One found that in Scotland, however, a series of 20 mile per hour zones did little to deter most drivers.

Last month in a radical departure from conventional policy, Mr Brunstrom told his police authority a Royal Commission should examine legalising some or all illegal drugs.

Despite billions of pounds and thousands of officer hours, the number of addicts and "recreational users" of illegal drugs in the UK has multiplied at an alarming rate since the 1970s.

The chief constable said he believed that the war on drugs has already been lost.

BBC Wales's Nick Palit
"Already some of the world's top supercars have their speed limited electronically"
North Wales Police Chief Constable Richard Brunstrom
"The thing we're really after is a cultural shift."
See also:

26 Sep 01 | Wales
Website traps speed cameras
17 Jul 01 | Health
'Ban mobiles when driving'
02 Aug 01 | UK
Push for more speed cameras
21 Jan 00 | UK
Crackdown on car phones
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