A SPEED-busting device set up to combat drivers going too fast through a village has proved to be an instant success.
The speed detection device, which flashes up a smiley face if a vehicle is travelling under the speed limit and a sad face if they are going to fast, was positioned at the side of the road on Elwick Village Green, in Hartlepool.
It was in place for 90 minutes earlier this week and out of the 105 cars that went past only six drivers broke the speed limit.
The owners of those vehicles will now be sent a letter by post from Cleveland Police warning them about the dangers of travelling too fast.
The scheme was organised by PC Kieth Robinson and Police Community Support Officer Cath Jones, the ward officers for the Rural West area of town, and two volunteering members of the public as part of the Community Speed Watch Initiative.
PC Robinson said: “The speed detection device was placed in a prominent position on the village green with warning signs positioned ahead and after it.
“The device shows vehicles speed as it approaches the sign and flashes up a smiley face if the vehicle is travelling under the speed limit, and a sad face if over it.
“The speed detection device was in place for 90 minutes and 105 cars went past it, out of those only six were going over the speed limit.
“The registered keepers of those vehicles will receive a letter through the post from the police informing them that their vehicle had been seen speeding and a speed watch area and the problems speeding can cause.”
He added: “I hope that people who use and drive through Elwick will respect the people who live in the village and stick to the speed limits.
“Speeding has been identified as a problem in the village for quite a while, and I hope the Community Speed Watch Scheme will deter people from speeding, reduce the perception of speed and build on public confidence.”
The main road through the village is used as a short cut by drivers gaining access to and from the A19, and similar schemes have operated in the past to try and deter drivers going over the speed limit.
Councillor Ray Wells, conservative representative for the ward, believed the scheme was a good idea and said: “I welcome the scheme and hope it helps reduce speeding in the village.”