Hundreds of drivers in Yorkshire picked up on driving offences by police in unmarked HGVs

Police used unmarked lorry cabs provided by National Highways to catch drivers committing offences. Credit: National Highways

Hundreds of drivers committing traffic offences have been caught by police in unmarked lorries over the course of a week in a special operation with National Highways on a major motorway.

Eight police forces worked with National Highways to look-out for unsafe driving in a "week of action" on the M1 between Leeds and London.

Officers in South and West Yorkshire stopped a total of 271 vehicles between 6 and 12 March, with penalties ranging from words of advice and traffic offence reports to court summons and arrests. 

National Highways provided the unmarked heavy good vehicle (HGV) cabs to the police forces so that officers can spot unsafe driving behaviour from a higher position. 

South Yorkshire Police stopped 185 drivers, of which 179 were Light Goods Vehicles (LGVs) and six were cars.

Of the 185 stops, 41 people were using their mobile phone, 15 were not in proper control of their vehicle, 73 were not wearing a seatbelt and 10 were driving without due care and attention. 

In West Yorkshire, police stopped 86 vehicles, of which 32 were HGVs, 35 LGVs and 19 were cars.  

Eight of these were found not to be in proper control of their vehicle, while 21 were using their mobile phones.

Another 37 were pulled over for not wearing a seatbelt, and seven drivers had insecure loads.

Sgt James Parmar, of West Yorkshire Police’s Roads Policing Unit, said the "vast majority" of people stopped were driving HGVs or LGVs.

“The reality is that the dangers of actions such as using a mobile phone while driving, not wearing a seatbelt or driving without due care or attention are potentially even more catastrophic when a larger vehicle is involved," he said.

Acting Sgt Rodney McEnery added: "If it makes one driver change their behaviour and think twice, then it’s worth it, as all these offences can and do cost lives.

"Innocent people die. 

“People are always quick to comment how we want to issue tickets and generate income, but it couldn’t be further from the truth," he said.

"We want safe roads. As police officers we are sadly familiar with seeing death and fatalities on our roads and delivering the news to a family that their loved one has died never gets any easier.”

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