A MOTORIST caught driving at 98mph through a 60mph zone was among more than 70 speeders recorded during a police operation at the weekend.

Police were out in Teesdale and Weardale at the weekend to tackle road safety issues as part of an operation dubbed Project Edward.

Officers from Cleveland and Durham Road Policing Unit (RPU), Road Casualty Bureau, Neighbourhood Policing Teams, Durham police's motorbike section and volunteers from Community Speedwatch were all involved in the action.

The operation followed a week of work with the European-wide campaign Project Edward (EveryDayWithoutaRoadDeath), which aims to cut deaths on European roads.

Officers spent time speaking to the public and were also deployed to roads which residents have asked to be monitored across the area such as Stanhope, St John’s Chapel and Middleton-in-Teesdale.

On the A66 at Bowes Moor, 30 drivers were above the 60mph with the highest being 98mph.

In Darlington Road, Barnard Castle, a further 14 motorists were caught driving at excess speed with the highest recorded as 45mph and 30 drivers in Middleton-in-Teesdale will also be receiving letters from the Community Speedwatch team.

The Northern Echo:

In St John’s Chapel three local drivers were issued with Traffic Offence Reports, one for the use of a mobile phone and two for speeding.

Officers from RPU gave out six tickets for Fatal 4 traffic offences which includes not wearing seatbelts, speeding, distraction and alcohol or drugs.

Two vehicles were also seized for having no insurance.

A driver and his passenger were stopped and searched for drugs on the B6278 and arrested for several offences including taking a motorvehicle without consent and possessing cannabis.

The Northern Echo:

Teesdale and Weardale Sergeant Angela Drasdo said: “Road safety is such an important issue in the Dales and this was a weekend of coordinated action with officers coming together to not only tackle those who flout the law but also reassure residents that their concerns are listened to.

“Project Edward is about preventing road deaths. Since lockdown was lifted, we have seen more and more people going out to enjoy the Dales but we would encourage them to drive responsibly and considerately.

“We have seen some good results from this latest activity and we will continue to deploy regularly.”