Second highway hearing as WMPCC tackles congestion and cuts
Whilst transport remains a key issues for mayoral candidates – including the debate over nationalising the M6 Toll – the region’s only currently elected figure David Jamieson is holding a follow-up hearing into motorway delays to review progress against the recommendations he made earlier this year on Tuesday 20th December.
In response to widespread public concern, the West Midlands Police and Crime Commissioner (WMPCC) called an initial public hearing to examine the multi-agency response after a 24-hour closure of the M6 following a fatal crash. The hearing was not asked to look into the circumstances of the incident which tragically led to the loss of a life nor to apportion blame, but to examine:
- What action could have been taken by all relevant authorities to mitigate the delays more effectively;
- The level of multi-agency working and what improvement steps need to be taken.
The hearing on Tuesday 20th December will be to review the progress made since March.
West Midlands Police and Crime Commissioner David Jamieson said:
Delays like we saw on February 4th following a fatal crash on the M6, cost the economy in the West Midlands millions of pounds with people and goods not able to get to where they were needed. Ultimately those delays cost money, jobs and inconvenienced people. They also potentially impact on public safety. That is why I called a public hearing and for the first time made Highways England locally answer in public, along with the police and councils.
The recommendations made previously will become even more important with HS2 construction starting soon and the associated building projects that will criss-cross the motorway network.
The people of the West Midlands need a motorway system that is safe, efficient and reliable – this hearing aims to help achieve that goal.
I took the findings from the first public hearing to the government and will raise the findings from this meeting with ministers again. It is only right that when incidents happen they are dealt with as quickly as possible so that the motorway network can get up and running again.
Meanwhile, the Police and Crime Commissioner has since reacted to cuts doubling the size of last year to the West Mids force for this coming year, announced this week in the Police Grant Report 2017/18.
The West Midlands force will still remain, however, one of the top funded forces in England and Wales.
West Midlands Police and Crime Commissioner Youth Summit 2016
To finish on a lighter note, around 100 people attended this year’s West Midlands PCC Youth Summit, which focused on young people and the issues that matter to them, including safer travel, internet safety, digital policing and the dangers of sexting.
Brand new Youth Commissioners – who are the “voices of their peers” when it comes to matters of policing and crime in the region – were also welcomed to their roles.
David Jamieson said:
The West Midlands is one of the youngest regions in Europe and it’s vital that we listen to and learn from the younger members of our society.
This was a night that showcased campaigns and strategies for young people, by young people.
All those who took part were truly inspirational and their work was educational and engaging. My office will now work closely with the Youth Commissioners to put things into practice.
Assistant West Midlands Police and Crime Commissioner Ashley Bertie added:
Myself, the Commissioner and the Chief Constable of West Midlands Police could not be more proud of the young people who took part in the summit.
Young people and the issues that affect them are a top priority in the new Police and Crime Plan and it is extremely important that we work alongside them to tackle problems they are facing.
The new Youth Commissioners are:
Chanay Knight – Birmingham West and Central/Birmingham South NPU
Shahnoor Adill andConnor Fowler – Birmingham North/Birmingham East NPU
Lucy Hunt – Sandwell
Chloe Gibbs and Charlotte Oliver – Solihull
Alex Russell and Louise Pardoe– Dudley
Anil Kararra and Yasmin Francis – Coventry.
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