We are currently experiencing network problems with the desktop version of Police Oracle. We hope to have these resolved as soon as possible.

Suffolk truck team hauls in 1,000 offenders

A pair of specialist vehicle officers have racked up nearly 1,000 offenders in just seven months. Suffolk’s commercial vehicle unit has also generated £180K in fines.

A new team dedicated to policing commercial vehicles has passed a major milestone, just a few months after launching.

Suffolk’s two-man Commercial Vehicle Unit (CVU) started operations in November 2020 and despite lockdown have recovered fines for people trafficking and taken 189 dangerous vehicles off the roads.

The officers, PC Wayne Sturman and PC Terry Harvey, are in charge of one of the country’s busiest road networks for haulage and tourism due to the Port of Felixstowe.

PC Harvey is the constabulary dangerous goods safety adviser and is chair of the National Carriage of Dangerous Goods Practitioners Forum.

As well as policing compliance and adherence to the wide range of legislation and regulation associated with commercial vehicles, the CVU has an important role in the disruption and investigation of a range of criminality associated with commercial vehicle activity and use. 

The unit is attached to the Roads and Armed Policing Team (RAPT) and supervised by a RAPT sergeant.

In just over seven months the unit has stopped 969 vehicles, dealt with 1,436 offences and issued £181,950 in fines.

The pair have also prohibited 189 vehicles from the roads, immobilised 80 and issued 222 drivers with warnings. These were for offences including insecure loads, tachograph infringements and carrying dangerous goods.

Two vehicles have been stopped relating to vehicles linked to haulage companies that have failed to pay fines for allowing illegal immigrants to enter the UK. When these vehicles are stopped the company has to pay the fine at the roadside, which can amount to several thousand pounds.

The unit has also also participated in or organised the numerous RAPT operations and days of action, including Operation Tramline – for which police are provided with an HGV tractor unit by Highways England, allowing officers to carry out patrols across the strategic road network and focus on offences committed by lorry drivers.

So far this year, checks found more than 60% of vehicles have failed to comply with regulations.

The pair have also been targeted high value stolen vehicles which organised crime gangs regularly attempt to ship abroad through the port where a full time officer from the force is monitoring containers.  

Inspector Gary Miller, of the force’s Roads and Armed Policing Team, described their work as exceptional.

"For two officers to have stopped more than 900 vehicles in that time - detecting over 1,000 offences in the process - is a phenomenal effort that clearly demonstrates the importance of this unit and justifies its creation.”

He added that their work was also making the road network safer for other road users.

"The dedicated resource and specialist knowledge that the CVU officers provide to us as a constabulary is invaluable. Their work is helping to improve the safety of our roads for everyone by reducing the likelihood of these vehicles being involved in serious or fatal collisions,” he said.

Leave a Comment
In Other News
Precept rise to fund control room upgrade, PCC reveals
Suffolk makes national appeal to find stolen dog owners
Officer trial by media is unjust says Fed after Suffolk officers cleared
Modern slavery: everyone's problem
More News