A SPECIALIST police team will use new camera equipment costing hundreds of pounds to help keep the county’s roads safe.

Essex Police’s commercial vehicle unit (CVU) has acquired a Sony zv-e10 camera which will be used to help them identify offenders and capture evidence.

This high-tech camera will be used to photograph and film drivers who commit driving offences or pose a threat to other vehicle users on roads including the A12, A120, M25, M11, and A130.

According to Sony’s website the camera, which has been funded by National Highways, retails at £599 or £699 with a lens.

Gazette: In use - the sony ZV-E10 being tested by policeIn use - the sony ZV-E10 being tested by police (Image: Essex Police)

Officers will use the camera in proactive road patrols during Essex Police’s participation in Operation Tramline.

The national road safety campaign aims to reduce collisions and incidents, whilst improving safety, and journey time on major roads.

Since trials began, the camera has captured drivers committing dangerous driving practices including using mobile phones whilst driving, not wearing seatbelts and speeding.

Sergeant Jason Dearsley, who leads the CVU, said: “We continue to add new resources and innovative ways to police our roads, and the camera is a great tool to help officers ensure road safety.

“Thanks to National Highways, if in the future, we identify a traffic offence, we will be able to record the incident as it happens.

Gazette: Road - a street view image of the A12Road - a street view image of the A12 (Image: Google Maps)

 “The footage will be used as part of an evidential package submitted to the court so that there is no doubt about what happened.

“It means that cases will be dealt with quicker and timelier, ensuring safer roads.

“It’s not instead of police patrols, it’s in addition to what we do.”

During Operation Tramline, CVU officers have access to a HGV lorry to help view lorry cabs and to monitor driver behaviour.

With the camera, the force claims it can now record offences committed by the driver of any vehicle.

Last month, the CVU travelled 7,000 miles on the network of roads that is being monitored during Operation Tramline.

The unit issued 126 traffic offence reports and seized 12 uninsured vehicles during patrols.

Essex Police supports the Under Vision Zero campaign, a Safer Essex Roads Partnership which aims to eliminate death and serious injuries on the county’s roads by 2040.