Byline: Dan Warburton
HUNDREDS of police officers have been clocked breaking the speed limit over the last three years, The Journal can reveal.
Nearly 290 on-duty officers have faced the full force of the law for speeding while not responding to emergency calls.
Figures show that 27 officers were fined pounds 60 and had three points put on their licence for breaking the limit.
And 197 officers were withdrawn from their driving duties, while 46 were forced to attend speed awareness courses. Last night road safety campaigners claimed the figures proved that no-one was above the law.
Jeremy Forsberg, of the Northumbria Safer Roads Initiative, said: "We treat everyone exactly the same and this type of speeding is obviously wrong.
"That's why the system is there and there's a need for everyone to go through the process. Nobody is exempt from speeding and the police obviously have a huge responsibility - they do an important job that everyone values and that's great. They are responding to emergencies and the work they do is fantastic - the majority are law-abiding and don't speed.
"But the roads are dangerous enough and it's important that everyone goes through the process."
Between 2007 and 2009 around 9,675 "notices of intended prosecution" (NIPs) were issued to officers from Northumbria Police after they triggered speed cameras.
But 9,388 were cancelled after they proved they were responding to a 999 call at the time.
Within Durham Police just 17 NIPs were issued to speeding officers and all but one of those were cancelled.
The remaining officer appeared in court for offences of speeding and failing to provide details, and received six penalty points and a fine.
The officer escaped internal disciplinary proceedings. Last night it was claimed that the differences in figures between the forces reflected the number of speed cameras available to each one.
In Durham there are no fixed speeding cameras and a limited number of camera vans. …