A local North Somerset cycling club is leading the way in cycle safety through the use of camera technology thanks to support from Avon and Somerset Police Community Trust’s Road Safety Fund.
Portishead Cycling Club has recently purchased multiple sets of cycle mounted cameras to be used for protection against dangerous driving as well as to educate and hold their own cyclists to account when out on the road.
The cycling club has been working closely with Avon and Somerset Police’s Road Policing Unit as part of their ongoing work addressing the vulnerability of those on two wheels.
In the first six months of 2021 of such work, the force received 1,484 camera uploads with evidence of road related offences. This related in 1,667 warning and prosecution letters being issued.
Following a trial period, and with clear support from its members, the Portishead Cycling Club made a successful application to the Police Community Trust for a grant to purchase a number of front and rear camera light sets for use during all club rides. As a further way to notify road users of these cameras, club ride leaders will be wearing hi-vis jackets that display a clear image of the video recording logo and the safe distance 1.5m overtake logo.
“The cameras will go out on each separate club ride and we will be producing a user guide for our ride leaders to follow to make certain the cameras are used correctly and only for the purpose intended, plus how to report and download any incidents to the police for investigation. Part of this guide will clearly outline that the cameras will not only be recording how motorists are driving, but also how we are riding as well. This dual approach will give extra focus for our club riders to ride sensibly and by the rules too”.Portishead Cycling Club chairman Rob Ellis
PCC Mark Shelford added: “I welcome this innovative use of Police Community Trust funding and actively encourage other cycling clubs to apply for similar projects or initiatives to ensure the safety of its members. We all need to ensure that our roads are safe for everyone who is using them and the Police Community Trust wants to say yes to as many local organisations as possible who are working towards the same aims. If you think your group has an idea of how you can help make roads safer, please apply!”
“Cycling remains a safe and efficient way to travel and we attend very few serious collisions involving cyclists but, we want to keep it that way. More and more people are choosing to ride for leisure or as an alternative to taking the car.
“However, despite all best practices being adopted there are still a number of unfortunate and unwelcomed incidents that can occur, often putting riders in danger of injury, such as dangerous and close overtakes from drivers, abuse and anger being directed at riders, or even items thrown at them from vehicles.”PC Dan Cox, Road Safety Officer
- The Road Safety Fund is part of Avon and Somerset Police’s Community Trust and is generated through speed awareness courses before being invested back into the community to support projects that are tackling road safety. The fund is to support community and voluntary organisations who continue to work hard to keep their roads safe. To read more about the fund and the grant criteria, please visit: avonandsomerset.police.uk/roadsafetyfund
- Portishead Cycling Club was set up to promote cycling for all local people. The club has grown in the last five years to become one of the largest cycling clubs in the area with over 190 members cycling for exercise, sport or just to be part of riding in a social group. To find out more about the camera technology used by the club, please visit portisheadcycling.com or contact: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Follow Avon and Somerset Police’s Road Policing Unit on twitter: @ASPRoadSafety