Time to revitalise the road safety committee(January 12, 2009)
Twenty five years ago this month the government made the wearing of seat belts compulsory as a major road safety effort measure writes Paul Macdonald.
At the same time a quarter of a century ago the stick of monetary penalty being wielded by central government was matched in Warminster by a town council that eagerly supported the carrot offered by a Road Safety Committee.
Drawing on the hard work and professional knowledge of locals like Roy Hayball (the owner of Beeline Coaches and a small fleet of taxis) motorists and cyclists were encouraged to use the roads carefully and with consideration.
Back then in neighbouring towns like Trowbridge driving instructors combined with police officers to organise practical safe driving events and highway code quizzes.
Today, no such committee exists, and instead Warminster road users see the police have taken to using shock tactics displaying the remains of a car at Granada services in which a young man died.
On the plus side, there are still junior schools in the town that arrange cycling proficiency classes.
As the costs of any road traffic fatality runs into hundreds of thousands of pounds the time has come for the town council to find a very modest sum of money to fund the Road Safety Committee again.
One of the town councillors owns a bicycle shop and another is a taxi driver. The council has a transport and environment committee.