Twenty Traffic Control Officers (TCOs) have become the first to be officially endorsed by Sussex Police under its Community Safety Accreditation Scheme (CSAS).
The TCOs are employed by the AA (Event Traffic Solutions) and will play an important part in improving community safety in Sussex by ensuring traffic safety for motorists at large scale events, such as the Brighton Marathon.
Staff will also have the power to request names and addresses from drivers that they believe have committed a road traffic offence, for example using a mobile phone at the wheel.
The AA is one of a number of companies and organisations to be accredited under Sussex Police’s CSAS. In 2008, Crawley Borough Council and Horsham District Council’s neighbourhood warden schemes were both accredited with a range of powers to tackle low level anti-social behaviour.
And at the end of 2012, the University of Brighton’s night security team were accredited with a range of powers to help them tackle anti-social behaviour on their campuses in Brighton and Eastbourne.
The scheme followed the introduction of The Police Reform Act 2002, and allows people other than police officers to use certain powers whilst they were carrying out their duties aimed at community safety and which tackle crime, disorder, public nuisance and anti-social behaviour.
All the TCOs have been subject to police vetting and have undertaken additional training. They will keep their existing uniform and display the CSAS logo, and have been issued with identity cards.
The CSAS Manager for Sussex Police, Simone French, said: “The AA already has a close working relationship with the local police, and this new accreditation will only strengthen this partnership, increase public reassurance and improve information sharing between both parties.
“The TCOs will provide a very valuable, additional resourse to police officers and PCSOs at large scale events across Sussex and we’re delighted to welcome them on board.”