Whittlesey and District Neighbourhood Watch

Creating safer, stronger and active communities

Highway Code Changes

Table of changes to The Highway Code

The New Hierarchy for Road Users  

Those who do greatest harm have a higher level of responsibility!

 The Highway Code changes significantly from the 29th January 2022. This article sets out below the changes shown on the official govenment page here and is reproduced in full below. Many articles in the media are incomplete and may miss some of the finer points. The new text affects all road users including pedestrians!

Read more: Highway Code Changes

Burglars Target Car Keys

There have been a number of burglaries across the force targeting vehicle keys.

Please be alert to suspicious activity at homes or addresses with high powered vehicles for example BMW, Audi, Volkswagen, and Mercedes.

Burglaries are being committed to obtain vehicle keys as improved security means vehicles are more difficult to steal without a key.

The police are encouraging residents to remain vigilant during the day, lookout for any unusual people or vehicles paying attention to the driveway of a house where a desirable car is parked, even if it is not there at the time, similarly late at night, if you are coming or going be on the lookout for unusual activity.

Owners of high value, desirable cars have been asked to take extra precautions:-

  •  Never leave vehicle or other keys in open view of your letterbox or  ground floor window where a potential offender could easily access them by fishing them out with a device, consider installing a cage or security device to keep the letterbox secure.
  • Always lock windows and doors.
  • Fit a steering wheel lock / or aftermarket security device
  • It is rare that burglars attack householders in Cambridgeshire, but if the thief is persistent enough to break in, it’s best they take the keys and leave. The safety and protection of people should always come first.
  • If you have a secure garage you can park your car in overnight, do use it..
  • Set burglar alarms and any other security devices you have installed, consider a driveway alarm to give you early warning of someone approaching on your drive.
  • Consider fitting a tracking device, if your car is stolen there is a greater chance of it being traced.
  • Be alert to who is around and where your keys are.
  • Report suspicious activity or interest in these types of vehicles to police on 101, or 999 in an emergency.
  • Without putting yourself at risk, try to obtain a description of anyone you saw, and registration numbers of vehicles this can be passed on to police to aid investigation.
  • Criminal activity can also be reported to Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.

Are Smart Motorways Fit for Purpose?

Smart Motorways were introduced nationwide after a successful pilot ended on the M42 near Birmingham in 2010. They were designed without a hard shoulder to separate drivers who break down from the normal flow of speeding traffic. In the pilot,there were safe stopping points for motorists, called emergency safety refuges, on average every 600 metres. 
 The three different types of smart motorway currently include controlled motorways, dynamic hard shoulder running schemes and all lane running schemes. 


Read more: Are Smart Motorways Fit for Purpose?

Clean Your Windscreen!

A traffic officer has warned of the dangers of driving unroadworthy vehicles after a woman was convicted of killing her disabled cousin.

Hayley Sterna, 51, was driving a Peugeot van south along the B1052, Brinkley Road, at Westley Waterlees, when she hit Chris Clements who was riding in a wheelchair close to the road.

Mr Clements, 40, of Beech Croft, Brinkley, was taken to Addenbrooke’s Hospital in Cambridge but died the following morning.

Following a police investigation, Sterna, of Braefield, Somersham, admitted causing death by careless driving because she had driven with a dirty windscreen, causing her to be dazzled by sunlight.

However, she was yesterday found not guilty of the more serious charge of causing death by dangerous driving after a jury at Cambridge Crown Court concluded her driving had not fallen “far below” the standard expected.

She was sentenced at the same court to 12 months imprisonment, suspended for two years, disqualification from driving for two years with an extended retest and 200 hours' community service.

Sergeant Simon Goldsmith, who investigated, said: “This case shows the potentially devastating consequences of driving a vehicle that is not fit for the road.

“It would not have taken long to clean the windscreen and replenish her washer fluid but Sterna made the tragic decision not to.

“Driving is something many of us do every day and it can be easy to forget we are in charge of a potentially lethal weapon. It’s crucial everyone regularly checks their vehicle is roadworthy, particularly during autumn and winter months when road conditions are likely to be worse.”

During the trial, the court heard Mr Clements was walking his dog when the collision took place at about 2.25pm.

Forensic collision investigations showed Sterna had not cleared her windscreen during her journey, having run out of screen wash.

She also failed to clean the screen or add screen wash despite having a two-and-a-half hour break and after the collision she said she had been dazzled by sunlight through the windscreen.