The Drive SMART campaign launched in September 2009, and is aimed at combating anti-social driving in Surrey in a bid to make the county's roads safer. This is a partnership initiative involving Surrey County Council and Surrey Police, which will tackle driving behaviour that negatively affects the lives of county road users and residents.
After he took office in June 2009, the Leader of Surrey County Council, Dr Andrew Povey, pledged to put £1million towards tackling the issue of greatest concern to local residents. The results of local surveys, the feedback of local residents during the county elections and talking to the Chief Constable of Surrey, Mark Rowley, about the issues most often raised at neighbourhood panel meetings revealed anti-social driving to be a major concern.
The campaign was launched at the first in a series of REED events, which was held in Worplesdon, near Guildford. Roadside Education and Enforcement Days (REED) are aimed at educating drivers who have committed a driving offence. At the REED days drivers are pulled over and, where appropriate, offered road safety advice on the spot rather than a penalty.
REED events were held across the county since the launch and are one of a range of education and enforcement initiatives that will help tackle the problem. As well as enforcement and education activities, the campaign is being supported by advertising which will highlight to people the selfishness of their anti-social driving habits.
What do we mean by the term anti-social driving?
Any road behaviour that affects other peoples' quality of life in a negative way would be considered as anti-social driving. It could cause an accident or serious injury, or it could simply be annoying or inconvenient to other road users, causing them stress and anxiety. Typical examples include:
- Driving whilst using a hand-held mobile phone
- Bad parking (parking on white zig-zags, double yellow lines etc)
What do we hope road users do as a result of the new campaign?
The Drive SMART campaign will increase Surrey Police's capability to detect anti-social driving behaviour, whilst also educating drivers about how their actions on the road impact on others. The aim is that drivers change their negative behaviour, making Surrey's roads safer and less stressful for everybody.
For further information on Drive SMART visit the dedicated website: www.drivesmartsurrey.org.uk or call us on 0300 2001003 or Surrey Police on 0845 125 2222.