New ‘CRASH’ road policing initiative

A new information service that will help police to identify road accident hotspots and reduce the number of road users killed or seriously injured has taken a major step forward.

Feb 5, 2009
By Paul Jacques
Graeme Biggar

A new information service that will help police to identify road accident hotspots and reduce the number of road users killed or seriously injured has taken a major step forward.

The National Policing Improvement Agency (NPIA) and the Department for Transport will use software development and systems integration services consultancy IPL to develop the software for collision recording and sharing.

The service, known as CRASH, will be introduced in three police forces in early 2010 before being rolled out nationally across England and Wales.

This project will substantially improve the effectiveness of road policing by:

•Replacing the collision reporting forms traditionally completed by police officers at the scene of an accident.

•Improving the accuracy and speed with which road traffic collision data is gathered.

•Providing more up-to-date information on collisions.

•Removing excessive paperwork.

The service, which will be managed by NPIA Police National Computer (PNC) Services, will allow police officers to enter information either on a handheld computer or a vehicle data-terminal. It will link details entered at the scene directly to the PNC, enable officers to make digital ‘drawings’ of collision scenes and automatically send information to the Department for Transport.

Where multiple collisions occur it will also allow several officers to simultaneously complete different parts of the same report, meaning less time in the station and more time policing roads.

Road Safety Minister Jim Fitzpatrick said: “Britain has one of the best road safety records in the world but we are determined to do everything we can to continue making our roads even safer. Detailed, accurate and up-to-date information is vital if we are to tackle the causes of crashes on our roads so I am delighted that this important project is getting underway.”

Richard Earland, NPIA’s chief information officer, said: “By allowing officers attending road traffic accidents to build up information with such unprecedented accuracy and speed the service will contribute substantially to the ultimate objective of making our roads safer for all users.”

IPL has already developed NOMAD, a similar business program to CRASH, for the Highways Agency which allows its workforce to manage the agency’s roadside assets using mobile data terminals.

IPL is also working with Kent Police to develop force intelligence-led policing systems and is helping to deliver mobile solutions to Wiltshire Police and Hertfordshire Constabulary.

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