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Police News - Beat SM46 Meadows & Morningside / Southside & Newington

A Division News November 2011

'with you for you'

  Divisional Commanders Message

Meeting the needs of local communities, being accountable to them and working with them is fundamentally what much of policing is about. None of this will change when we move to a single national police force in 2013.
All my officers, but in particular our safer neighbourhood officers, work hard to ensure that you know who they are, and what they are doing to tackle crime in and around your area.
This newsletter forms an important part of communicating what we are doing, but this month I thought I should draw your attention to other ways in which you can see what your local police are concentrating on.
Those with Internet access can see a breakdown of crimes and offences, by council ward, under the view statistics button on the “My Neighbourhood” area of our Website, the crime statistics are updated monthly.
For fans of ‘Twitter’ you may also find the Lothian and Borders twitter feed useful. Not only will you be kept up-to-date with ongoing operations and initiatives, but if we experience severe winter weather you’ll be able to see minute by minute updates on travel advice and other weather relating items.
I would also encourage you to attend your local community priorities setting meeting, to speak with local officers and tell them what you wish them to concentrate on. For those not able to do this, speak to, call or email your local Safer Neighbourhood Team and let them know the issues that affect you.
By telling us what we need to concentrate on, we can all work together to ensure Edinburgh remains a safe and enjoyable place to work, visit and live.

Chief Superintendent Gill Imery, 'A' Divisional Commander.

Cheers without Tears

With Christmas fast approaching, Lothian and Borders Police would like remind all drivers of the dangers of drinking and driving. As we know, the festive period may provide more opportunities for parties and celebrations and whilst we want everyone to have a good time, it’s important to keep in mind the safety of all road users.
The yearly campaigns have gone a long way to educating the public about alcohol units, legal drink/drive limits and the tragic consequences of accidents involving drunk drivers. However statistics still show that an unacceptable number of drivers will gamble with the safety of others and drive under the influence. If caught, this would result in a court conviction, a driving ban of at least 12 months, an endorsement of your licence for 11 years and a criminal record. For a second offence, under the forfeiture scheme, you could lose your car!
It is worth remembering that many factors come into play on how alcohol affects people and even the smallest amount will impair your driving.
To ensure a trouble free festive period, consider the following advice:

  • Plan your transport home from Christmas lunches or nights out i.e. taxi, bus or lift from a designated driver
  • Be aware you may still be unfit to drive the following morning; have a contingency plan for getting to work
  • Never accept a lift from a drunk driver

  Local Operation and initiatives

A joint initiative to promote road safety for Edinburgh cyclists has been hailed a success.
Officers from Lothian and Borders Police Road Policing Department and Safer Neighbourhood Teams across the city, worked alongside the City of Edinburgh Council during a ‘Week of Education’, which was supported by cycling organisations, such as The Bike Station and Spokes. During the campaign, high-visibility police cycle patrols monitored the city centre to engage with cyclists and drivers. Guidance and advice was issued to road users to ensure they stay safe when travelling.
A total of 247 cyclists were stopped by officers and given advice for a number of issues, including red light offences; cycling on pavements; and bike security/safety, while a further 152 were issued with information on visibility at a static point in Middle Meadow Walk.
Around 100 motorists were also stopped during the week and spoken to by police to correct inappropriate driving behaviour and other offences. Six drivers received a fixed penalty notice or were reported to the Procurator Fiscal and three cars were seized. The Police also offered a free bike marking service during the campaign and 69 cycles have now been registered on the national database.
Police Constable Leon Malinowski said: “We hope that this initiative will enhance the standards of cycling and motoring in and around the city, as well as preventing cycle owners becoming the victims of theft.”

At the end of September, the City of Edinburgh Council and St Leonard’s Safer Neighbourhood Team ran an ‘Environmental Week of Action’ in the South Side and Newington areas of the city. The operation focussed on a number of issues that effect the quality of the environment in the area, such as grafitti, littering, inappropriate use of ‘A’-boards on pavements and trade waste.
At the same time, the police were offering advice in relation to crime prevention and other anti-social behaviour matters. The work carried out involved a mix of enforcement, education and clean-up activity. Private and business premises were offered discounted rates to remove grafitti, whilst other public buildings were cleaned. The public were issued with containers for cigarette butts and other small waste items, whilst those dropping litter in the streets were issued with fixed penalty notices. Visits were also carried out to business premises to ensure they were complying with trade waste disposal rules and regulations.This was a really good opportunity to continue our partnership working with a number of service providers especially the Safer Neighbourhood Team at St Leonard’s. We targeted our resources to provide a robust clean up of the Southside area. On completion of the ‘Clean Up Week’ our efforts were acknowledge by members of the public, the local Community Council and Local Councillors who all commented on the positive changes they could see.

  Appeal for information

The St Leonard’s Safer Neighbourhood Team is currently in the process of carrying out a review into grafitti througout the Southside/Newington and Meadows/Morningside area. It is essential that the team has as full a picture as possible in relation to new and emerging sites that are being targetted and ‘tags’ that are being used.
Many residents in the area have spotted the ‘WINSTON’ tag that is being used throughout the city and we would appeal for any information people may have about the individual or group associated with this tag. Likewise, if anyone has any information about this issue or would like further information with regards to getting grafitti removed, please send an e-mail to Meadows/Morningside Safer Neighbourhood Team or Southside/Newington Safer Neighbourhood Team or use one of the contact telephone numbers below.

Local Priorities

The area’s local priorities will be reviewed again at the start of November. Inconsiderate and careless cycling was a priority across the area and we have reported previously on enforcement and education measures that have been taken.
Parking complaints and speeding were identifed as problems in Sciennes Road and Argyle Place and local officers, roads policing officers and traffic wardens have been taking action against offending motorists. Joint patrols between the police and environmental wardens have been put to good use in an effort to deal with dog fouling in East Castle Road, whilst high visibility patrols, cycle patrols and the deployment of a CCTV van in Braidburn Valley Park has had an impact in reducing calls of anti-social behaviour in the area.
Local priorities are determined by local communities and everyone is encouraged to participate and suggest local ideas, either through local community councils or by contacting their local Safer Neighbourhood Teams.

Ready for Winter?

The last weekend in October saw the launch of the ACPOS Road Policing National Winter Safety Campaign, with a main focus on general vehicle roadworthiness and driver education. Hazardous conditions soon show up deficiencies in car maintenance or driver skills. By taking a few preventative measures, drivers can minimise road risk and complete their journey safely.

Vehicle preparations

  • Have your vehicle serviced before the winter
  • Pay particular attention to lights, clear windows and mirrors, battery, antifreeze and washer additives, wiper blades and tyres.
  • Journey preparations
  • Consider if the journey is absolutely necessary
  • Remember the diff erences between urban and rural conditions
  • Check local/national weather forecasts
  • Keep emergency equipment in your vehicle
  • Notify someone of your route and the estimated arrival time
  • Driving in adverse weather conditions / Minimising risk
  • Keep windows clear by allowing good ventilation
  • Avoid severe steering/braking/acceleration
  • Maintain good observation skills
  • Adapt your driving to the weather conditions
  • Keep in mind increased stopping distances

In the event of a breakdown

  • Ensure that your vehicle will not block access (abandoned vehicles can obstruct spreaders)
  • If possible remain in your vehicle unless there is a safety risk
  • Use the engine to keep warm unless the exhaust cannot vent

  A Division

City of Edinburgh help and advice National freephone helplines

Lothian and Borders Police
Non emergency
0131 311 3131

Lothian & Borders Fire & Rescue Service
Fire safety advice:
(freephone) 0800 169 0320

Lothian Gay and Lesbian Switchboard
0131 556 4049
0131 557 0751 (lesbian)

For emotional advice if you are feeling depressed or suicidal:
0131 221 9999 (Edinburgh)
08457 90 90 90 (National)

Shakti Women’s Aid
Support and information for black minority ethnic women experiencing domestic abuse:
0131 475 2399

Signposts people with disability to a wide range of services:
0131 669 1600

Victim Support
01896 751 212

Women’s Aid
0131 3158 110

(calls may not be free from mobile phones)

Breathing Space
For emotional advice if you are feeling depressed:
0800 838 587

Help for people aged 18 or under:
0800 11 11

Know the Score
Free confidential drugs information and advice:
0800 587 587 9

Message Home
Get a message home for free if you have run away:
0800 700 740

National Debtline
0808 808 4000

National Domestic Violence Helpline
0808 2000 247

National Missing Persons Helpline
0500 700 700

Runaway Helpline
0808 800 7070

Scottish Domestic Abuse Line
0800 027 1234

Shelter’s Free Housing Advice Helpline
0808 800 4444

Lesbian, gay and bisexual charity:
08000 50 20 20

Womens Aid
0808 2000 247

Call 0800 555 111 (24 hours)
Meadows/Morningside Safer Neighbourhood Team
Southside/Newington Safer Neighbourhood Team
Call 0131 662 5016/5017
City of Edinburgh Council
Environmental Wardens - Call 0131 529 7440
Antisocial Behaviour Helpline - Call 0131 529 7050 (24 hours)