LOCAL police were out in force recently to crack down on illegal drivers and travelling criminals as part of Operation Bandit.
The two-day operation conducted last week by Montrose officers and members of Tayside Police’s road traffic division screened 1,124 vehicles on the A92 at Rossie Braes to detect vehicles that were unfit for the road.
Inspector Grant Edward, head of road policing in Angus, said 50 vehicles had been stopped and examined between 7.30am and 4.30pm last Monday and Tuesday for a number of reasons. As a result two vehicles had been seized at the roadside.
He said: “One driver was detected with no licence, another with no insurance and both vehicles were seized. Another 28 were stopped in relation to lighting defects and those drivers were advised to have those defects rectified.
“Particularly at this time of year, people have to make sure their lights are clean to be seen. Bulbs should also be checked and our advice is to carry a bulb replacement kit which can be bought from a number of outlets so if there’s any kind of lighting defect it can be corrected.”
As part of the continuing intelligence-led operation, officers are using automatic number plate recognition (ANPR) cameras. These are supported by a number of national databases which can tell officers in a matter of seconds if a vehicle has been stolen or used in a crime.
The cameras also tap into information to indicate if correct documentation has been obtained for the vehicle and if a number plate is legal.
Inspector Edward added: “Operation Bandit uses the latest technology to assist us but there is really nothing better than an officer’s sixth sense, and if a vehicle looks worthy of stopping it usually is.
“The number of vehicles registered in the UK and the number of insurance documents issued doesn’t correlate and if anyone suspects a vehicle is being used illegally, come forward and let us know.”