Cyclists to wear cameras in new trial aiming to catch dangerous drivers on camera in Devon

23/02/21- New camera helmet for cyclist in Devon-LDRS
If the trial proves successful the helmet mounted cameras could be rolled out to the wider public. Credit: LDRS

Cyclists across Devon are taking part in a new trial where helmet-mounted cameras will be used to try to catch dangerous drivers.

The new camera trial aims to improve safety for cyclists.

Footage of vehicles which pass too close to the cyclists will be uploaded to the Devon and Cornwall Police Operation Snap dashcam portal.

Devon County Council ha enlisted the help Exeter bike recycling charity Ride On, as well the Exeter Cycle Campaign, Met Office, RD&E Hospital and Exeter Science Park, to launch the scheme.

The move is part of Operation Snap which started in August last year. It is the police response to the increasing number of video and photo evidence submitted from members of the public in relation to driving offences.

If the trial proves successful, the scheme could be rolled out to other major employers and the wider public.

Credit: PA Images

Since August last year Operation Snap has received 195 submissions from cyclists, and police have been able to take positive action in more than half of those cases.

Devon County Council cabinet member for highway management Stuart Hughes said: “This trial is being undertaken because we’ve seen lots of reports of motorists not knowing the safe distance to leave when overtaking cyclists and they pass too close to them.

"If they’ve witnessed driving that’s dangerous, they have the reassurance that they can upload their footage to Operation Snap.

“The cameras look like helmet-mounted lights, so they’re not particularly noticeable, but we want motorists to know that close passes are potentially being recorded."

Sam White, from Ride On, said he had been using the camera for a few weeks and thinks it could be "a valuable tool to document some of the dangers" those on bikes face from motorists.

Richard Kent-Woolsey, manager of force road traffic collisions, tickets and prosecution office for Devon & Cornwall Police, said: “Cyclists continue to be a significant contributor to Devon & Cornwall Police Op Snap and in the last six months police have been able to take positive action with 112 cases that would otherwise have been missed.

"I thank all those that have taken time to upload their footage to Op Snap and helping to make our roads a safer place.”

Credit: Daniel Clark, Local Democracy Reporting Service

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