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Testing times for Solihull's vehicles as agencies get tough

DOZENS of vehicles were stopped and searched as part of Operation Redtint - a multi-agency clampdown on vehicle crime.

DOZENS of vehicles were stopped and searched as part of Operation Redtint - a multi-agency clampdown on vehicle crime.

Solihull Council, West Midlands Police and the Fire and Rescue Service were among the organisations based on the NEC's West Car Park.

Officers used state-of-the-art technology to check the number plates of cars, taxis, trucks and lorries travelling along nearby roads. Suspect vehicles were then escorted to the car park for inspection.

Naz Pathan, from the council's trading standards and licensing department, said: "This is a great location because people travel along these roads from up-and-down the country.

"We're close to the rail station, the NEC and Birmingham Airport so there are a lot of people using these roads.

"These exercises are always very successful and we hope if we keep doing them there will be no-one left to catch out."

Last month a similar operation was carried out on the Stratford Road, Shirley. On that occasion over 60 vehicles were searched and five motorists arrested.

Steve George, from the road casualty reduction education unit, was responsible for showing drivers what might happen if they didn't take care on the road.

Along with colleague Richard Simmonds, he showed drivers a scrapbook of pictures taken at road accidents.

"Some of these photos are fairly shocking and we want people to stop and think," explained Steve. "If you're driving along at 80mph and hit a wall or articulated lorry then it's going to be very serious.

"Firemen, police and paramedics see some terrible things on a daily basis - but even some members of the emergency services are shocked by some of these pictures. We just hope that they make a difference, even if only one person takes notice then it's worth it."

 

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Cathrina Hulse
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