Drivers urged to "back off" on Injury Prevention Day
1,054 motorists have been handed on-the-spot fines for careless driving in Nottinghamshire since police were awarded new powers two years ago.
The figures have been obtained ahead of Injury Prevention Day on 19 August through a freedom of information request by the Association of Personal Injury Lawyers (APIL) a not-for-profit group for injured people which is campaigning to make tailgating socially unacceptable.
Fixed penalty fines of up to £100 were introduced for motoring offences including tailgating and hogging the middle lane of the motorway in August 2013.
“Driving too closely to the car in front, or ‘tailgating’, is a serious safety issue and leads to unnecessary crashes and injuries,” said Jonathan Wheeler, APIL’s president. “We hope that Injury Prevention Day gets people thinking about what they can do to prevent injuries which could be avoided.
“Tailgating is incredibly anti-social, as well as dangerous, and can be really intimidating for other drivers. It’s also entirely pointless as it’s not going to get anyone to their destination any faster.
“We’re asking simply for people to ‘back off’.
In a recent poll of motorists, APIL found that more than half (56 per cent) do not know that the typical stopping distance when travelling at 30 miles per hour is 23 metres (75 feet) including thinking time, according to the Highway Code. This distance equates to six car lengths.
National Police Chiefs’ Council Lead on Roads Policing, Chief Constable Suzette Davenport, said:
“Tailgating is not only a very dangerous thing for drivers to do – putting themselves and others at risk of death or serious injury in the event of a sudden halt – it is also a criminal offence, punishable at the very least by three points on your licence and a £100 fine.
“Our officers are not there to make drivers’ lives a misery – they are there to protect them from harm and to ensure that the country’s roads network is kept moving and kept safe. Motorists who flout the laws of the road put themselves and those around them at risk of danger and we are determined to stop them doing so. So please – for the sake of other road users and for the sake of your own good name, please back off from tailgating.”