Road rage poll: 51% questioned in Wales were abused

Cyclist Matt Turner caught road rage directed at him on camera and tells his story

Related Stories

More than half of drivers in Wales say they have been the victims of road rage, a survey has found.

A poll for the BBC Wales' Week In, Week Out found 51% of motorists had been abused by other road users.

The UK government has introduced a £100 fixed penalty to try to tackle offences like tailgating and lane hogging - driving which can lead to road rage.

But some police officials have questioned if officers have enough resources to enforce the new penalties.

The new powers introduced in August were heralded as a way of tackling road rage.

ROAD RAGE VICTIM

Cyclist Matt Turner, a college student from Prestatyn, Denbighshire, caught road rage directed at him on camera.

He had challenged a motorist after he cut a corner and that motorist came after him.

"He overtook me and pulled sharply in front of me and slammed on his brakes," Mr Turner said.

"When he got out of the car and approached me, I did think he was going to hit me."

The motorist then subjected him to a foul-mouthed tirade, in which he threatened Mr Turner.

He reported the incident to the police and the driver was issued with a caution.

"I still feel that he doesn't regret what he did, he just regrets being caught," Mr Turner added.

But the number of traffic officers has fallen in Wales more than anywhere else in the UK, with a 31% reduction over four years compared to the British average of 12%, according to the road safety charity Brake.

Meanwhile, the four Welsh police forces are yet to issue any fixed penalty notices for careless driving since the new powers were introduced in August but they say the delay is merely administrative.

The Home Office admits police budgets have been cut in a difficult economic situation and it wants police forces to "seek ways to improve and continually challenge themselves".

Stephen Trigg, chairman of the South Wales Police Federation - which represents police officers - said: "Whilst I wouldn't criticise it as an initiative, you have to take that against the back-drop in the reduction of police officers, especially in the number of road policing officers.

"I have to ask the question, are the police fully able to engage with that initiative and make it a success because of the lack of numbers?"

Mr Trigg added: "Police services have been really stripped down.

"The fat has been stripped off the bone and now we're scraping the bone. I think the government need to wake up to that."

South Wales Police and Crime Commissioner Alun Michael also has reservations.

"It's all very well having a good idea and I support the idea of this initiative," he said.

"The government is right to create the possibility of early intervention but this government doesn't bear any regard to the cost of doing that work."

The poll for BBC Wales spoke to 750 adults about whether they had been victims of road rage.

Week In, Week Out will be shown on BBC One Wales at 22:35 GMT on Tuesday 29 October.

More on This Story

Related Stories

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external Internet sites

More Wales stories

RSS

Features

BBC © 2014 The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.