Census on A5 causes chaos - Niallster
I am posting this today as yesterday I was just too angry for words.

The fools that run Milton Keynes Council assisted as always by the clowns in blue who clearly have no crimes to solve set up a Census and basically closed down the A5 northbound between the Stony Stratford roundabout and the first exit during RUSH HOUR yesterday.

Those familiar with that area know that if you are entering MK from that direction that roundabout is unavoidable and always a traffic choke point on a normal day.

The chaos was unbelievable. All roads were jammed 10 miles back and it took 3 hours to complete what should have been a 30 minute journey.

If this was France they would have beaten hell out of these clowns and burned the police vehicles. As it was we British sheep queued and took it whilst muttering under our breath.

There is now nothing for it but to fire all the civil servants and police and just start again. Throw out all exiting councillors and start again with new parties and all Chief Constables to be elected for 2 year terms.

Idiots.
Census on A5 causes chaos - LikedDrivingOnce
Electing Chief Constables is a good idea.

That way, the voters can influence them to set their priorities on catching the real criminals i.e. Murderers, Robbers, Rapists, and Politicians.
Census on A5 causes chaos - Focus {P}
The chaos was unbelievable. All roads were jammed 10 miles back and it took 3
hours to complete what should have been a 30 minute journey.


Nightmare. Have you tried ringing them up and asking them to justify it, especially the timing?
Census on A5 causes chaos - bell boy
i bet the same people causing the chaos advised their own family members to avoid the area
Census on A5 causes chaos - daveyjp
"especially the timing"

If you need to know the habits of rush hour traffic you do really need to do it at rush hour.

Justification is the 10 year survey in order to bid for money to undertake road building.



Census on A5 causes chaos - Pugugly
Before spouting off and possibly making yourself look foolish, best to make sure of your facts. Census points are ordered by the Local Authority to measure traffic flows and find out specifically why cars are using that stretch of road at that time of day, usually as their are likely to be developments that will impact on traffic flow in the future; the Police are dragged in as the people who run them don't have a power to stop vehicles - to wind you up even more Police Officers can be brought in on days off and the Local Authority billed for their time, maybe to unwind you a little Officers can detect offences that would normally get missed so they may well end up detecting more crime.

Small scenario for those after elected CCs - the Conservative model goes something like this you'd have an Operational senior Officer in charge of everyday policing and also an elected member (bit like an MP but potentially with a smaller intellect and zero experience of he real world and how it operates) the elected member could come from any background for instance from the far right or left. Your worse nightmares could be made real very quickly.

Edited by Pugugly on 02/07/2009 at 17:34

Census on A5 causes chaos - Niallster
OK Pug I'll take it point by point.

1. Census points are ordered by the Local Authority. I think I covered that and called not just for new elected members of that Local Authority but new parties with totally new members with an agenda of serving the public instead of abusing it.

2. There is no way that that Census found out what cars usually use that stretch of road at that time of day. Everyone in those 10 mile queues including me called at least one relative and informed them of the chaos and told them to take another route. Lorries were u-turning on the A5, no easy task in itself and gong another route. Had they not blockaded the road but set up in one of the laybys they could have got a more realistic result albeit from a smaller sample. By chasing the chaos they changed the survey result.

3. So the Police are 'dragged' in are they? Often on their days off the poor lambs? Are you saying that the Police have no way to say no to the Local Authority and to point out the sheer lunacy of what was proposed? The truth is that the Police could and should have refused to be involved and forced a better method which as per 2. wild have yielded a more representative result.

4. The argument that they might have detected other crimes is specious. The Police can and do set up roadblocks at any times. They may not be legally entitled to do it but they do it anyway. Why not at midnight? Do you believe more criminals will be abroad in rush hour or at midnight?

5. Like all legal professionals you slight menders of the public as having no experience of the 'real world'. CC's often like to refer to Policing issues and states that civilians have no experience of policing issues so they should stay mute about them. So how is that working out for us? Do we have a world class police force annihilating crime? Nope we have a useless bunch of idiots who by their incompetence have turned the UK in to officially (see statistics published today in the newspapers) the most violent society in the world. The UK is now officially more violent than South Africa. My contention is that ANY system would be better than the one we currently have and IF we ended up with the elected fool you envisage then in 2 years we get to replace him.

Now who looks foolish?
Census on A5 causes chaos - midlifecrisis
"Do we have a world class police force annihilating crime? Nope we have a useless bunch of idiots who by their incompetence have turned the UK in to officially (see statistics published today in the newspapers) the most violent society in the world. The UK is now officially more violent than South Africa."

You had a touch of sympathy up to this point. I think you should cancel your Daily Wail subscription. As one of those 'useless idiots', I would like to say you've just made yourself look very silly indeed!

Elected Chief Constables! I shudder att the thought. They'd do what every other Politician does. Go for headlines and soundbites that would win them votes, regardless of the cost or consequences.

>>" Now who looks foolish?"

Errr...you do!
Census on A5 causes chaos - Pugugly
1. So why make drag the Police into it then, especially with childish name calling.

2. Yes at a huge cost to the local council tax payers - Cops will be more than happy !

3. Yes they can, specifically under PACE they can set up road safety checks at any time and yes if you knew anything about the way big time crims operate they are far ore likely to be moving about in the day than at midnight - think as to why they want to do that.

4. No, I am a mender (sic) of the public as well, and was caught up in one yesterday - totally pointless, conned off roundabout cops on the slip road and the census bloke handed me a form to fill out and post back (who's going to do that for goodness sake ?). Policing has failed in this country due to nonsense paperwork, targets and the stifling of local Policing. Two years is a long time.

Census on A5 causes chaos - Niallster
No doubt a cop and a lawyer think I am being foolish but then they would. They are invested in a system that has clearly failed. It is hard to see yourself through others eyes under such circumstances but I represent the majority view and they know it and I do not view telling the truth as name calling.

The crime survey I refer to was undertaken by the International Crime Victims Survey, which the Home Office help draw up with the Dutch ministry of justice and 40,000 people from 17 industrialised countries, including the US, Portugal, France and Poland were sampled. Its results were reported in most of the newspapers including the Independent. Funny how Pug doesn't think references to the Daily Wail are name calling.

One thought I leave you with. If we had elected CC's do you think Richard Brunstrom would still be in a job? 2 years may be a long time but the good people of North Wales are suffering without end.
Census on A5 causes chaos - Pugugly
I agree that Daily Wail is nae calling - I don't disagree on your views on crime and disorder. Agree with RB - funnily enough he no longer is in the post !
Census on A5 causes chaos - Pugugly
Oh and Brunstrom's 3 BCUs are always in the top five for audited crime detection.
Census on A5 causes chaos - Lud
That report was in the Telegraph too, with a sentence far down in the copy about comparisons between different countries being hard to make owing to different ways of collecting the crime statistics. It doesn't carry much conviction to say our society is more violent than quite a few I can think of.

Nevertheless one can only sympathise with Niallster's forcefully argued case. Much of what he says seems incontrovertible, although the polemical use of terms like idiots and clowns over-eggs the case a bit. It seems true that police work is undermined on one level by choking paperwork and mad regulation, and distorted and harrassed on another by the same over-regulation.

But the malaise runs a lot deeper than local authorities and Police 'services' as they are called these days. Our politics are increasingly dominated by a namby-pamby wish to coddle all citizens, the more undeserving the better, at the cost of everything else up to and including public order. That is what we seem to be demanding of our politicians, and that is why they are giving it to us. At the same time our children and grandchildren are being saddled with colossal debt. It's hard to imagine where all this carp is going to end.

Edited by Lud on 02/07/2009 at 18:55

Census on A5 causes chaos - jbif
comparisons between different countries being hard to make owing to different ways of collecting the crime statistics >>


That does not seem to me fit with what Niallster says:

" undertaken by the International Crime Victims Survey, which the Home Office help draw up with the Dutch ministry of justice and 40,000 people from 17 industrialised countries "

Census on A5 causes chaos - midlifecrisis
" but I represent the majority view "

Really..you've sampled everyone in the country have you? I have taken to studiously avoiding a lot of the nonsense that gets posted at regular intervals on the forum. Your insults of very hard working Police Officers, who put themselves at risk on a daily basis, was completely out of order.

I can give you plenty of examples of appreciation letters and e-mails. Those don't make good headlines (and fact really doesn't have to matter in todays newspapers). The Daily Mail reference is entirely appropriate. There are a good few of it's readers who seem to have migrated here lately.

You got caught up in a survey. It's a pain and has happened to most of us. Most of us however haven't taken to making vicious and petulant attacks on those who may be involved.

As Inspector Gadget recently posted:

What, then, are the police for these days?

1. To exceed Government and ACPO targets, regardless of their relevance.

2. To ?Deliver Performance? in terms of whatever silly new initiative is in fashion (currently Citizen Focus).

3. To provide a scapegoat when things go wrong, usually with people who should be in prison.

4. To provide a scapegoat when things go wrong, usually with people who should be in care.

5. To provide a scapegoat when things go wrong, usually with people who should be in hospital.

6. To be the ONLY police force in the world (as far as I can research) who tackle bat/ knife/gun wielding maniacs without any weapons except an aluminium stick and a tin of pepper.

7. To provide a scapegoat when things go wrong, usually with people who society has never said ?No? to.

8. To provide a scapegoat when things go wrong, usually with children who should be being parented.

9. To engage with partners to provide locally based, coordinated and effective responses to issues in the community.

10. To deliver effective criminal justice outcomes, working seamlessly with the CPS and the Courts.

OK, so I made up those last two just to see if you were still awake. Sorry. That was rude.

Edited by midlifecrisis on 02/07/2009 at 19:00

Census on A5 causes chaos - jbif
What, then, are the police for these days? >>


According to reports today, this is what the ACPO wish Policing to be in future:

"In a response to the Government's Green Paper on policing, the Association of Chief Police Officers (ACPO) came up with a sentence described as ?gobbledygook? by the Plain English Campaign.

The paper, signed off by Chief Constable Sir Ken Jones, the President of ACPO, was revealed in full today in Police Review as:
'The promise of reform which the Green Paper heralds holds much for the public and Service alike; local policing, customised to local need with authentic answerability, strengthened accountabilities at force level through reforms to police authorities and HMIC, performance management at the service of localities with targets and plans tailored to local needs, the end of centrally-engineered one size fits all initiatives, an intelligent approach to cutting red tape through redesign of processes and cultures, a renewed emphasis on strategic development so as to better equip our service to meet the amorphous challenges of managing cross force harms, risks and opportunities' "

Census on A5 causes chaos - ifithelps
...The Daily Mail reference is entirely appropriate. There are a good few of it's readers who seem to have migrated here lately...

Sounds like a witch hunt.

Instead of shooting the messenger all the time, you could consider why the Daily Mail is so successful.

It would give the police plenty of backing if they went out and nicked people instead of hiding behind their desks and institutionalised politically correct claptrap.

I appreciate there are many policemen who would love to be allowed to get out and do the job, but a serving copper said to me the other day:

"I like paperwork, it doesn't fight back.''

Like it or not, the clear-up rates are abysmal for burglary, assaults, criminal damage and other low-level crimes.

Big business has a word for it: failure.
Census on A5 causes chaos - midlifecrisis
It would give the police plenty of backing if they went out and nicked people
instead of hiding behind their desks and institutionalised politically correct claptrap.



A colleague of mine was shot dead not too long ago. He wasn't 'hiding behind a desk'. When you're tucked up in bed, I'm out with my colleagues filling up the prisons (you know, those places that are full to bursting, despite a weak and ineffective CPS)

Feel free to complain about the politically correct claptrap to your local, elected Politician. They're the ones responsible for it.
Census on A5 causes chaos - FotheringtonThomas
" but I represent the majority view "
Really..you've sampled everyone in the country have you?


I think he's got a valid point. I don't think that our confidence in (road and other) policing has ever been so low.
I have taken to studiously avoiding a
lot of the nonsense that gets posted at regular intervals on the forum.


Hm. Unfortunately when replies are made to this "nonsense", I feel that the blind rejection of quite possibly valid points in fact compounds the problem.
Census on A5 causes chaos - jbif
>> mender (sic) >> >>

as their [sic] are likely to be developments >>
Daily Wail is nae [sic] calling >>


sic to you too! twice. ;-)

Edited by jbif on 02/07/2009 at 18:47

Census on A5 causes chaos - R75
4. No I am a mender (sic) of the public as well and was caught
up in one yesterday


Eh, before you make such comments as above, with the (sic) comment, it might be worth checking your own spelling in the previous post first:

>>specifically why cars are using that stretch of road at that time of day, usually as their are likely to be developments that will impact on traffic flow in the future;


Census on A5 causes chaos - jbif
it might be worth checking your own spelling in the previous post first: >>


R75
;-) That's what I said in my post at Thu 2 Jul 09 17:47 (although not as directly as you did).

Census on A5 causes chaos - Pugugly
No I am a mender (sic) of the public

I thought that the mispelling was quite funny really. Maybe we need Menders of the Public !
Census on A5 causes chaos - RickyBoy
It's been shifted a bit further North this week then?

Week before last they were located on the H6 (close to J14/M1) on the dual-carriageway as you head towards MK central. I was returning home mid-morning from my dentist (located in Newport Pagnell) and managed to drive through it all without being 'tugged'. Think they were all just finishing a fag-break.

However, later that week the local comic was full of 'angry from Tunbridge Wells' types who, I guess quite rightly, were a tad miffed about being delayed for appointments/meetings, work in general and (I suppose more importantly?), school exams. The jist of their complaints were exactly as you have indicated ? why carry out this exercise at the height of the morning rush-hour!

Oh, how I love my retirement lifestyle...
Census on A5 causes chaos - woodster
''That way, the voters can influence them to set their priorities on catching the real criminals i.e. Murderers, Robbers, Rapists, and Politicians. ''

Strangely enough, when local populations are asked what their Policing priorities are (and they are regularly asked through 'neighbourhood action panels') they NEVER come up with crimes like these.

However, when people have a pop at plod, they ALWAYS come up with these crimes.

Well, that's the status quo resumed then. Damned if they do...


Comparisons with 'big business' (all doing notably well lately!) are spurious. If you had a spate of burglaries randomly across a town of 200k population, how would you go about solving them? Where would you start? Then add in the daily mix of all other crimes and nuisance matters affecting people, the Governments push for 'neighbourhood' style policing and you'll have precious few officers at your disposal. What would you leave in order to deal with the burglary problem?. For sure when you did you'd have another person on at you for their problem. Now multiply many times over for 24 hrs a day. What experience can big business bring to bear when everyone wants you and everyone's problem is equally important to them? Policing doesn't have a product that people may want to buy and thus a target audience to sell to. Government will always cap the level of money spent on Policing and tolerate a level of crime in modern society. Policing can't be that much of a failure, the prisons are full and the courts dish out 'community' sentences allowing the hardcore to re-offend.

Oh I forgot - once stopped in a traffic census you can then drive off. You don't have to answer the questions.
Census on A5 causes chaos - tack
I will grant the original poster some poetic license in his diatribe (obviously borne of frustration, and who wouldn't?).

But, it is funny how, when people are inconvenienced, the people doing the job they are paid to do; and often do well, become the butt of an antagonistic verbal battering.

If the police was so rubbish, how come the daily magistrate and crown court lists are full to bursting? It ain't just minor traffic matters......there are full blown rape, murder, assault, robbery, burglary, fraud and theft trials going on all over the country.

There are lazy and ineffective coppers in every force, but there are many I have looked up to and admired for their sheer brilliance, resiliance and damned good coppering skills.

I could say that this forum is full of whingers who just bellyache their petty lives away all the time, and have nothing good to say about anything at any time. But I won't. There are some truly wise and knowledgeable people who post here on a regular basis, some who I have laughed out loud at....but I don't lump them in with the whingers and whiners.

But, hey, let's welcome diversity in all its forms
Census on A5 causes chaos - barney100
I wonder how much that cost the local economy. Must be a tidy sum if hundreds of folks couldn't get to work for hours.....hope the chief constable was in one of the queues.....
Census on A5 causes chaos - woodster
Niallster's right that the resultant congestion (if as described) is totally unacceptable. The Police should have declined to assist on that basis if the chaos was foreseeable and withdrawn at the time if it was obvious what was happening. Blindly agreeing to provide policing powers appears ill thought through. or simply not thought about at all!
Census on A5 causes chaos - daveyjp
Delve deeper and Google the problem for the story. There had been a number of these census points set up all week and none had caused a problem. The Chief COnstable made a decision to suspend the operation due to the problems it was causing - well done to him.
Census on A5 causes chaos - jbif
The Chief COnstable made a decision to suspend the operation due to the problems it was causing - well done to him. >>


www.mk-news.co.uk/mknews/DisplayArticle.asp?ID=429...3

"..... Chief Inspector Andy Standen said: "Traffic censuses are important to allow for planning for the future development of Milton Keynes.

"However, due to the traffic congestion, I?ve made the decision to suspend the census until later today.

"We will be speaking with the Council about the wisdom of holding the census on roads like this in the future as I don?t believe this is in the public interest to cause so much disruption.

"We want to apologise for the problems caused this morning and we ask drivers to be patient whilst we do our best to clear the backlog." .... "

Obviously they had not learned from teh other end of the A5:
www.shropshirestar.com/2009/06/19/council-sorry-ov.../
"Shropshire Council admitted they had made mistakes over a traffic census on the A5 just outside Shrewsbury which saw motorists caught in tailbacks of up to six miles.
And they vowed to learn lessons after the 12-hour study led to floods of complaints."

Edited by jbif on 02/07/2009 at 22:30

Census on A5 causes chaos - astrabob
It is a basic principle that when you measure something you should try not to affect what you are measuring. If you do, the results are meaningless.
Census on A5 causes chaos - Pugugly
Wow an unelected CC making a sound operational decision.
Census on A5 causes chaos - Avant
The workings of some people's minds would be a fascinating study.

Clearly this was a wrong decision made by some local government officials who don't have the ability to think outside the box. The police were simply asked to do a job which they could decline only with difficulty - and it seems that the chief inspector very sensibly called the exercise off when it got out of control.

So why do people have a go at the police, quite unjustifiably, and in doing so weaken the valid point they are making?

I agree that everyone is entitled to a view - but the debate would be of a higher quality if some brains got into gear before keyboards.

There are some hugely valuable contributions made on here by some senior police officers who are also backroomers - we don't want to put them off. There are times when it's reasonably to criticise individual officers - no-one is perfect - but this isn't one of them.
Census on A5 causes chaos - deepwith
Well said Avant. I am grateful for the legal contributions on this site from both police officers and lawyers, who offer advice and help to many souls who ask questions about accidents, speeding, parking, insurance and so on.


Naillster, try bombarding someone who should be representing your views on what is going on. This is taken from her website:

It's important to tell your MP your views. All MPs take account of the views of their constituents when deciding which way to vote and which causes to support or oppose. If they don't get any letters about an issue, they may think no-one is bothered about it.

Contact Your MP
You can ring your MP at the House of Commons - call 020 7219 4272 and ask to be put through to your MP's office

Phyllis Starkey is the Labour MP for Milton Keynes South West which includes Stony Stratford, Galley Hill and Fullers Slade:

Tel: 01908 225522
Email: phyllis.starkey@gmail.com

Census on A5 causes chaos - Bromptonaut
I've encountered Dr Starkey MP on several occasions around MK & Northampton rail services. Whatever you think of he politics I'd rate her as a pretty effective constiuency Member.
Census on A5 causes chaos - Bilboman
There's a four letter answer to all of this: ANPR.
Could it not have been used for something public spirited for once? Like collecting data from vehicles as they passed, rather than having to stop vehicles one by one. SURELY an hour of data crunching will allow the authorities to extrapolate all the information they need: percentage of HGVs, types and ages of cars and therefore likely profile, no. of passengers etc. in each car. And if "suspicious" vehicles are picked up by ANPR, they can be stopped elsewhere on the road network, couldn't they?
It's not rocket science.
Census on A5 causes chaos - FotheringtonThomas
There's a four letter answer to all of this: ANPR.
collecting data from vehicles as they passed rather than having to stop vehicles

It's not rocket science.


No, and it would not work, as a traffic census picks up all sorts of information (if people actually answer accurately, or indeed answer at all). The only way it might be useful of there was full coverage of the road network - and I *certainly* don't want to go there.

Edited by FotheringtonThomas on 03/07/2009 at 00:53

Census on A5 causes chaos - RickyBoy
I've encountered her husband a good few times during lunchtime runs. That's about as close as I wish to get to any politician, but yes, she often features in the local rag and isn't afraid to put her head above the parawotsit!

In fact her 'hot potato' this week is an outcry against the ever-increasing proliferation of illegal (unregistered?) clamping companies preying on the unsuspecting citizens/shoppers of Bletchley.
Census on A5 causes chaos - Niallster
Well Avant and Deep an analysis of the workings of your minds would be an interesting study.

As the outcome shows the Police were not the unwilling participants pulled from their cosy beds on their day off as Pug and MLC contend. The Cop On The Spot had the power to call the whole thing off when chaos had ensued. This would seem to suggest that whilst the Council ordered the fiasco the Police were in operational control and could and should have refused to participate in the chaos BEFORE it occurred.

As other posters point out experience elsewhere not to mention local knowledge meant that my Golden Labrador could have foreseen the chaos and he's not the brightest bulb in the box.

Whilst I accept that non-police have no experience in 'real world' policing I can tell them that those of us who live in the 'real real world' know that our jobs involve avoiding chaos and that if we create chaos and then stop it we no not get plaudits we get fired for having created the chaos in the first place.
Census on A5 causes chaos - Bromptonaut
Was this on the dualled section between the Bedford Rd and SS or northwards from SS towards Potterspury?
 

Value my car