Credit: Cycling UK

Poll shows support for online system to report dangerous driving in Scotland

A poll of the Scottish public has shown strong support for the introduction of an online system that would allow people to upload and report footage of dangerous driving on Scottish roads.

Carried out by YouGov on behalf of Cycling UK, the poll asked the Scottish public whether they would support or oppose the Scottish Government working with Police Scotland to set up an online system that allows the public to upload footage of dangerous driving on Scottish roads.

Overall, 59% said they would support this measure, while 17% would oppose it. Of the remainder, 17% said they would neither support nor oppose such a move and 8% did not know.

Jim Densham, Cycling UK’s campaigns and policy manager for Scotland, said the results of the poll show the evidence in favour of bringing in such a system is overwhelming. “The Scottish public want to see this life-saving measure brought in. The evidence shows it will save police time and hold dangerous drivers to account. The decision is a no brainer and we hope the government will work with Police Scotland to make our roads safer as soon as possible.”

The polling follows a joint letter from a coalition of 33 organisations representing all of Scotland’s road users – including the AA, Cycling UK, road safety charity Brake, British Motorcyclists Federation and British Horse Society Scotland – calling on Police Scotland to introduce a nationwide camera footage submission system to make the roads safer, sent in March 2021.

Edmund King, AA president, said: “There is now evidence that the majority of road users, including drivers, and a major coalition of road and safety groups support a camera footage reporting system to make the roads safer in Scotland. AA members have been supportive of our ‘ThinkBikes!’ sticker campaign for some years and this initiative, targeted at dangerous drivers and riders, can further improve road safety for all.”

The Scottish Government recently announced a Vision Zero target for eliminating road deaths and serious injuries by 2050. Yet Police Scotland is one of only five UK police forces not using an online video reporting system – with the other 40 forces already having a system in place.

Cycling UK’s engagement with these forces has revealed that such systems cut an average of 8-12 hours of police time per case, by using dedicated civilian staff to assess the video evidence and reducing the workload of uniformed officers.

New data released this month shows that reports to the National Dash Cam Safety Portal (NDCSP), which is currently used by 37 UK forces, result in some form of action being taken against drivers in over 80% of cases. The portal has saved 263,240 police hours over the past three years – the equivalent of over 29 years of police time.

“Introducing this new system would be a signal of intent from both the government and Police Scotland on making good on the Vision Zero target,” said Densham. “Road crime is real crime – the submission of video evidence will help ensure it is dealt with appropriately, while also freeing up valuable police time to deal with other serious crimes.”

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