Dangerous speeding a problem around Jersey

DANGEROUS speeding is a growing concern around Jersey, according to Islanders who responded to the JEP’s story on Saturday about country roads being used as racetracks.

 (24240155)
(24240155)

The problem is not limited to St Ouen – where the honorary police have launched a crackdown after speeds as high as 103mph were recorded on the stretch of road running from Faulkner’s Fisheries to Mont Pinel – readers said, with almost every parish affected in some way.

St Helier resident Phil Smith said the problem could be seen right on the doorstep of the States police headquarters on Route du Fort, with Don Road and Havre des Pas also frequented by speeders.

‘If the police can’t be bothered policing, it’s not really up to poor honoraries that do it for nothing,’ he said.

A St Brelade resident, who asked to be identified only as Damian, said Route des Genêts has been a problem area since 2011, with dangerous speeds common after 11pm, although luxury cars could be seen ignoring limits earlier in the day as well.

‘100mph is slow throughout the week,’ he said. ‘What makes our race track more interesting is that most of the cars are over £100,000 too.’

Other areas of the Island drawing concern were Bagatelle Road, where a resident reported that they heard bikes and ‘sporty’ cars most nights, Trinity Hill and St Saviour’s Hill, Mont de Grève de Lecq, St Catherine’s, the North Road in St John and St Peter’s Valley.

‘I live in Grève de Lecq and when the sun comes out it gets very busy with cars and bikes and we see them speeding up the hill from the Prince of Wales at night around 12pm to 1am,’ another read wrote. ‘They race around here as well. This is a very busy tourist area in the summer and the speed limit is 40 mph. This is too fast for the number of people who use the beach.’

St Ouen’s chef de police Richard Honeycombe said the parish had sought help from the States police to stop the speeding, at its worst in the early hours of the morning, but had found support limited.

Another reader told the JEP, he had also tried reporting speeding concerns to the police.

‘They are not interested and say it is “a parish problem” which should be addressed to the honorary police,’ he said. ‘The honoraries, however, don’t have the manpower or resources.’

However, a statement issued by the States police said public safety remained their priority and paid officers were trying to support the parish forces.

‘We are in regular dialogue with our honorary colleagues and are aware of the reports of high-speed driving in the L’Etacq area,’ police said. ‘Since January this year, we have deployed officers to this area on six occasions, specifically to carry out speed checks at pertinent times. To date, no prosecutions have been brought as a result of these checks.

‘Public safety is our number one priority so we will continue to work with the honorary police to catch those involved and deter this kind of irresponsible and dangerous behaviour.’

Speeding is a problem in the Island’s green lanes as well, some readers said.

‘I live on Vallée des Vaux,’ said Colin Lever. ‘It is a designated green road, which means that it has a speed limit of 15mph and walkers, cyclists and people on horseback are supposed to have priority.

‘However, it is the case that most drivers exceed the speed limit with most of them travelling in excess of 30mph. At times speeds are in excess of 50mph. There have been numerous complaints to the Constable and we get a token speed check every couple of months.’

He said the parish kept data on how often the speed limit was broken, but had been reluctant to share it.

‘The combination of speeding vehicles and pedestrian traffic is an accident waiting to happen,’ he wrote. ‘There have been numerous close shaves in recent times, with cyclists knocked off their bikes. I even had a car mount the pavement at speed in front of me while I was walking home. And the driver castigated me for being in the way.’

Grouville resident Brian Atwood said despite Rue à Don being a 20mph zone, the norm was to exceed it.

‘Hardly any vehicles stick to the limit, closer to 40,’ he wrote.

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