In a state of high-dudgeon at the recent PCC and Hampshire Police crackdown on pavement cycling (read the story in The News) PCF decided to contact Hampshire Police to see how they are dealing with the more serious issue of speeding traffic in our crowded streets. After all, accident statistics tell us that the big killer of pedestrians is the motor car, not the bicycle. In fact, you have a considerably higher chance of drowning in the bath than you do of being killed by a cyclist. Therefore we were confident that, with public safety at the heart of everything they do, Hampshire Police would be taking the problem of speeding traffic seriously.
Or not. It turns out that “It is ACPO policy that forces do not enforce 20mph speed limits”. That’s right – despite the fact that the 20mph limit in Portsmouth was put in place by a democratically elected, law making body, and is widely supported, Hampshire Police are not enforcing it. Despite being public servants they seem to feel it is up to them to cherry pick which laws to enforce.
Clearly public safety is not at the heart of this. The biggest danger on the streets is not irresponsible cycling. PCF now plans to contact the new Hampshire Police and Crime Commissioner and ask him to review this as a matter of priority.