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How would you feel if you killed one of us? Smethwick pupils warn speeding drivers - WATCH

By David Cosgrove | Smethwick | Crime | Published:

“How would you feel if you killed one of us?”

A still from the video

That is one of the hard-hitting questions pupils put to drivers who were caught speeding outside their school – which were filmed as part of a a 'Bohemian Rhapsody'-style video.

Nine motorists caught exceeding the 20mph speed limit by the primary school went before a 'kids court', where they faced a grilling from the schoolchildren.

Drivers breaking the limit outside St Matthews C of E Primary in Smethwick were given the option of going before the kids court instead of points or a fine.

Slow down - a message from the children of St Matthews CofE Primary School in Smethwick

Pupils spoke to the nine drivers who were caught doing between 21mph to 29mph – telling them to think more carefully and stick to speed limits outside schools.

The school’s nine 'junior PCSOs' – pupils trained by West Midlands Police – quizzed the drivers about breaking the speed limit as part of a new road safety push.

They posed a series of tough questions, including 'Did anything distract you that made you drive above the limit?' and 'How would you feel if you killed one of us?'

One driver who went before the pupils said: “Speaking to the kids was an eye opener and it made me feel guilty," while another added: “It made me feel, gutted, horrible. I have children the same age, what if it was one of them?”

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A third motorist said: “It made me aware [and was] especially effective with the children delivering the message – all schools should do it.”

The project is part of the launch of Sandwell's new Road Safety Partnership, which sees Sandwell Council work with West Midlands Police and West Midlands Fire Service.

Cabinet member for highways David Hosell said: "The children spoke to the speeding drivers to make them realise the impact and consequences that driving over the speed limit can have on children and the community.

“We believe from our research and findings from other local authorities that have trialled this method that it is a very powerful and effective tool in our aim to change behaviours and attitudes to speeding.”

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Police officers monitored traffic speeds outside the school in Windmill Lane on Tuesday.

Earlier speed-checks had found 85 per cent of drivers were travelling at 28.7mph in the 20mph zone.

As well as the nine drivers who were grilled by the children, two others were given advice by police at the roadside and another was summoned to magistrates court after being found driving without insurance and otherwise than in accordance with a licence.

The council’s road safety team has also run road safety workshops at the school while pupils have designed posters and banners about speeding.

Chiefs said the video footage will be used as 'an educational tool for further speed awareness campaigns across Sandwell'.

Sgt Phil Griffiths from Smethwick Police said: “The idea of the kids court is to tackle drivers attitudes towards speeding by getting them to see the potential consequences of exceeding speed limits, particularly around schools.

“It also helps schools, children and their families to work with us and take an active part in making our communities safer for everyone.”

Smethwick fire station commander Juliet Malone said: "We're working with our partners to educate motorists and encourage them to think about their behaviour on the roads.

"We hope the impact of facing these children will not just be long-lasting for the drivers, but will also increase speed awareness and highlight the dangers for the children, too."

David Cosgrove

By David Cosgrove
Chief Reporter - @davidcosgrove_

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