More than 20 motorists stopped for using a mobile phone in Amber Valley

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More than 20 motorists were stopped by police for using a mobile phone at the wheel during an action day to target unsafe driving in the Amber Valley.

The operation, which took place at Lockwood’s Haulage Yard on the A610, Sawmills, saw police and partners teaming up to put the brakes on motoring offences and poor vehicle conditions.

The checks were carried out on Thursday, October 2 as part of the county-wide campaign named Operation Safedrive, which has been set up to target concerns about safety behind the wheel.

Officers from the local Safer Neighbourhood team worked alongside the Casualty Reduction and Enforcement Support Team (CREST), Vehicle and Operator Services Agency (VOSA), HM Revenue and Customs and the Roads Policing Unit to check that cars and their drivers were road safe and legal.

The crackdown saw police issuing a mixture of penalties and warnings to 20 motorists for not wearing a seat belt, 21 motorists for using a mobile at the wheel and two motorists who were found to be driving without a valid licence.

A £500 fine was issued to one motorist after HM Revenue and Customs officers carried out a test and found the vehicle to be running on illegal fuel. Ten vehicles were also deemed to have serious defects which saw the drivers being stopped from continuing with their journey without immediate repair or recovery.

Other motoring offences that were noted throughout the day included registration plate and lighting offences, brake and tyre defects and driving without valid insurance.

Inspector Graham Lamin, who oversees Safer Neighbourhood policing in the Amber Valley, said: “Throughout the operation we worked alongside our partners to tackle offences regarding vehicle conditions and road safety. The operation is not just about enforcement, it is also about educating drivers on the importance of safe and considerate driving.

“Although the majority of road users went on without a problem it was concerning to see the number of motorists who were putting other people’s lives at risk by using a mobile phone behind the wheel or not wearing a seatbelt.

“It is vital to take road safety and traffic issues seriously and we hope that this operation reminds motorists about the importance of safe and considerate driving.”

Police would also like to urge motorists to check over their vehicles especially now that the darker nights are drawing in. This includes ensuring that all of the vehicles lights are working properly and that their tyres are safe and legal to use.

To hear more about Operation Safedrive or to speak to the team call on 101, the non-emergency number for Derbyshire police.