back to article Neighbourhood watchers in Reading get speedguns

Police in Reading are today encouraging residents to join the Big Society and zap speeding neighbours with personal issue speed detection kit. The speedster who falls afoul of the personal speedguns gets two written warnings from neighbourhood police. Police may then take action on the third infraction. SPEEDNAUGHTY Be good …


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        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward


          The road was a national speed limit, one of those roads where doing national speed limit is possible, sensible (and bloody good fun) at points, at others you're enclosed in and right next to houses, it's very narrow, there is no pavement and it's windy. The 20 limit is in the narrow windy area where it turns out, lots of people couldn't make sensible decisions about their own speed and safety of themselfs and others, so speeds were enforced. If you were doing the 60mph speed limit in the now 20mph area, you were being seriously irrisponsible.

          1. Liam Johnson

            The road was a national speed limit

            I know the road well, but I haven't driven there for 10 or more years and not regularly for over 20.

            The question is, will 20 get you anything that 30 and common sense wont? Or even the 60 limit and some very big SLOW signs? The road is not inherently more dangerous than any of the other narrow stone walled roads in Yorkshire.

      1. Graham Marsden
        Thumb Down

        @Pointless limits

        "More often than not "pointless" speed limits in rural areas are due to unseen risks. "

        Yes, of course, that's why the last Government wanted to introduce a blanket 50mph limit on *ALL* rural roads no matter what.

        And, no, I'm not a traffic engineer, but I am an IAM Member so I can spot hazards where they exist and, more importantly, see where they don't exist.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward


          You may be an IAM, but due to the extra skill level that you have you should be able to realise that most people aren't as good as you, that being the point of the IAM. Do you think that the speed limit should be set for advanced motorists, or average motorists, maybe even less than average motorists?

    1. jonathanb Silver badge

      Re: probably

      They are most likely the ones you need to book for driving too slowly. That does quite rightly attract more penalty points than driving too fast, but far too few people are convicted.

  1. Anonymous Coward


    Of course, as many commentards have pointed out, the system is open to abuse; but to do that you would have to, if your victim chooses, commit perjury in a court of law. The maximum penalty for this 7 years in prison, so the risk is probably not worth it for most sensible people.

    I'm slightly alarmed at the negative comments here, it seems that any enforcement of laws you don't agree with, and are likely to break, is immediately an attempt at setting up a police state!

    Speeding is a very petty offence, which most of us commit on a daily basis (myself included), but speeding where people (and their children/cats/dogs etc.) live is very anti social and unnecessary.

    Many people who speed are premeditated speeders, they set off on a journey knowing they haven't enough time to complete it if they drive within the speed limits; but their own time is more important than other people's safety.

    There are also speeders who just seem to be oblivious to all speed limits; I'm forever stuck behind twats who drive along the 60mph road to the village where I live at 45mph, then continue to drive at 45mph when the speed limit changes to 30mph and race off into the distance.

    Whatever the reason for speeding, the only system that actually forces people to obey is average speed cameras because it virtually guarantees conviction if you don't comply.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward


      I hate the 40mph lot. Anyone would think their car only has one speed. What gets me is if they don't feel confident doing 60 on a clear stretch of road, why do they think they are a safe driver doing 40 in a built up area?

    2. carter brandon

      maximum penalty?

      I've always been more concerned about minimum penalties, 'cause that's what I always got. For speeding, I hasten[1] to add, not perjury. (Three times in 45 years. Nothing to brag about, but for a lifelong biker, not too shabby either.)


    3. John Murgatroyd


      Truck drivers ?

      Maximum speed on a single carriageway 40mph.

      Van drivers ?

      Max speed on single carriageway 50mph.

      The speed limit is the MAXIMUM speed, not the RIGHT speed.

  2. Tegne
    Paris Hilton

    Can I go and stand over these busybodies shoulders when they are browsing the Internet.

    So I can report to the relevant authorities if I find they are downloading something they shouldn't be? Home recording is ruining music, kids.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward


      You could, if they did it in public, I suppose. The thing is that when you're speeding in a car it's not private in any way, you are showing everyone that you're doing it.

      If I saw someone shop lifting, I suspect I'd grass them up. If I saw a fight in the street, I'd call the police. If I saw someone doing graffiti I'd also call the police etc. etc.

      1. Intractable Potsherd

        We clearly disagree, AC.

        As I've said here before, I am as honest and law-abiding person as most others, but there is nothing that would get me to report anything directly to the police that does not have immediate impact on me (and I mean that in the sense of having to get a crime number for the purposes of insurance). The police are at best useless, and at worse likely to investigate the reporter. However, I would use Crimestoppers for an offence against the person.

        Let the downvotes and the "my family are all in the force and are lovely" comments begin ...

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward


          The Police are not your enemy.

          Sure some Policenem/women get some things wrong from time to time, but the point stands that they are not your enemy and actually likely to help, if you need it.

          I could go on, but I can't be arsed.

    2. Knochen Brittle

      No, but ...

      ... there's nothing wrong with persistently standing between them and oncoming traffic holding up a large placard in front of the hair-dryer, as there's no law [yet] against 'obstructing a vigilante in the course of his duties' ~ good luck and I look forward to the YT video evidence of great justice!

  3. EyeCU

    OK waited long enough

    Can't believe no one has yet used:

    Betray your family and friends, fabulous prizes to be won!

  4. John H Woods Silver badge

    Carrot required...

    Why is it all stick and no carrot? How about average speed cams through villages with ANPR. Stick to the limit and get a smiley face, and an entry into the national raffle for a free vehicle tax disc.

  5. John Murgatroyd

    Soon, with evolved road pricing

    everyone will be anpr'ed every minute they're driving.

  6. T J

    It will create lifelong village feuds.

    There will be murders resulting from this.

    1. Graham Marsden

      You mean...

      ... they're introducing them in Midsomer...?!

  7. -tim

    Aren't these things on ebay yet?

    I think most of the teenagers around here would love to have one of those things if it would read fast speeds.

  8. ShaggyDoggy


    Given that speed is not a contributory factor in nearly all RTC's are not these radar wagglers basically wasting their time, and if they really wanted to make a difference, perhaps researching the main causes of RTC's and acting to prevent those would be more helpful.

    Oh wait, that doesn't get into the media.

  9. Eden

    Why do I get a funny feeling....

    That these people are not going to be properly trained or checked on and the equipment not maintanined and accurate records kept...

    Also as a biker who knows full well these things just don't work on bikes I'd be MORE than a little annoyed if I started getting letters from these twats accusing me of speeding when I'm not.

  10. James Hughes 1

    Did anyone actually read the article?

    First offence - a letter. Second offence - a letter.Third offence - Police escalation - didn't say whether that would be court or not - in fact I would expect Police escalation to mean they then do their own speed checks. That would make any resulting fine more solid in court. Or perhaps they just pop round to the offender and give them a few hints about their driving.

    I think this is an acceptable idea. Any number of times I have stood in my front garden on my 40mph (but should be 30)built up village road, with cars and lorries blasting past at >50 and wished I had some way of reporting these people because this road often has children walking along it to school or to the park. Hankin's lorries are the worst BTW, if anyone is listening.

  11. BillboBaggins

    Pro speeders!

    Speeding is a contentious issue and for 99.99999999999% of the time you are just breaking the law. But it only takes that 0.00000000001% to knock down or kill a child. Being a child, you have to do their thinking for them sometimes.

    I live in a small village with a 20mph past the village school. But as the road is a commute through it gets ignored by virtually everyone. Now if it was you in those circumstances and your child was knocked down, where would your argument be at that time, where would you like to string the speeding driver up to and what by?

    I wish more cars came with the driver set speed limiters. I’ve had one on a couple of cars now and as soon as I enter a 30mph zone, bang on it goes. That way you can concentrate on the road and not on the speedo. Job done.

  12. Sam Therapy

    Let me see if I have this right...

    Our government is giving us the privilege of doing a job - for free - that we pay them or their agencies to do for us.

    Hmmm... nah, that can't be right. As if people would fall for that.

  13. Eddie Hotchkiss

    Yeah Right

    "The most impressive aspect was the number of motorists who supported the campaign by stopping and thanking those taking part in the initiative."

    I am on a busy journey, some guy is pointing a device at me. I am going to pull over in a busy road, inerput my journey to shake the guys hand

    Which bit of PR bullshit is this. Did the guys organise to have his granny drive by and pull over to thank him


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