Community speedwatch

Do you have some spare time on your hands and want to help combat speeding where you live?

The Community Speed Watch initiative allows members of the community to address the issue of speeding by becoming actively involved in road safety, monitoring speeds at safe locations with speed detection equipment.

It addresses the problem of speeding through the joint work of the police, local community, parish councils and other partners.

The aim is not to catch as many speeding drivers as possible but to reduce speed in areas of concern.

Community Speed Watch informs drivers that excessive speed is socially unacceptable and helps to re-educate drivers about the dangers of speeding while addressing concerns from local residents about cars speeding through their neighbourhoods.

Police forces across the country implementing the initiative can show a reduction in overall average speeds, and a significant reduction in drivers travelling well above the speed limit, which highlights the benefits of the scheme.

How it works

  • Trained volunteers verify and record the registration numbers of offending vehicles.
  • These details are forwarded to Suffolk Police who will send offenders a letter.
  • A maximum of two letters will be sent to offenders.
  • Persistent offenders may be targeted for police enforcement.
  • Follow-up work on education and enforcement by Suffolk Police and our partners will also take place when appropriate.


Summary of guidelines

  • There must be a minimum of six volunteers in each Community Speed Watch scheme.
  • Speed checks must be conducted by at least two volunteers, preferably three at any one time.
  • Volunteers must be over 18 years of age.
  • Each Community Speed Watch scheme must have a co-ordinator and where possible, a deputy, responsible for the equipment and administration.
  • The Parish (or local) Council must support the scheme.
  • Volunteers are subject to police vetting checks.
  • Volunteers will be required to sign a Community Speed Watch agreement.
  • The locations for monitoring are chosen by the scheme. However, risk assessments will be carried out by a trained police officer who will approve the nearest safe site to that chosen. In some circumstances a site may not be deemed safe enough to conduct Community Speed Watch.
  • Training for volunteers will include use of the equipment, and health and safety issues.
  • The cost of training volunteers, risk assessing potential sites, and ongoing administration is borne by Suffolk Police.
  • However, Suffolk Police will not meet the cost of speed detection equipment, portable signs and reflective jackets.
  • The Police Authority insurance will cover volunteers, although parishes are advised to notify their insurer of their Community Speed Watch scheme.


What are the benefits?

  • Fewer fatalities and serious injury collisions.
  • Increase in road safety awareness by and for all road users.
  • Enhancing the role of community members as volunteers.
  • Raise awareness of anti-social road use.

Setting up a scheme

If you need to know more or are interested in setting up a local scheme where you live, please contact your Safer Neighbourhood Team


Where we need volunteers

We are currently seeking volunteers for the Ipswich scheme, and if you are interested in joining, please contact your local SNT nearest to where you live.

You can call 101 and ask to be put through to your local team or you can contact them via the website Safer Neighbourhood Team

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