DRIVERS using the A9 are being targeted by traffic police across two forces in a bid to reduce the number of collisions and casualties.
Drivers on the main arterial route to and from the Highlands are being warned that it’s their own behaviour, rather than what has sometimes been dubbed a “killer road”, that is responsible for the vast majority of accidents.
Their vehicle documents may be examined if they are stopped to ensure they have insurance and licences.
Those nabbed without documentation could face having their vehicles seized, police say.
Northern Constabulary and Tayside Police, together with the Vehicle Operator Services Agency (VOSA) are involved in the initiative. Under particular scrutiny will be careless and dangerous driving.
August is one of the busiest months on the A9 and historically has seen more collisions than other months on the stretch of road between Perth and Inverness. Both forces say this is what they want to change.
Police point out that accidents often lead to lengthy delays and the need for long diversions.
Inspector Derek Paterson, from Northern Constabulary, said: “Contrary to some beliefs, many serious and fatal collisions are caused by poor driver behaviour and not the road in itself. Taking simple measures such as regular breaks on long journeys to avoid fatigue; avoiding unnecessary distractions by not using your mobile phone while driving; ensuring you travel within the speed limit – and at an appropriate speed for the road and weather conditions; and ensuring seatbelts and child restraints are always worn, could all serve to save your own and other road users’ lives or prevent serious injuries.
“This is in addition to avoiding the penalties you may face for failing to comply with the road traffic laws, which are there to assist in making the roads safer.”
High-profile patrols will be carried out in marked vehicles, supported by mobile safety camera vans, to influence driver behaviour. Unmarked patrol cars also operate on the route.
Officers will be examining driving documents and if necessary using powers to seize vehicles being driven without an insurance policy or a valid driving licence.More on this story inside this week's Ross-shire Journal.