POLICE have held an operation to crackdown on the problems on the A44, which has been labelled a "dangerous racetrack" by residents.

The joint operation by West Mercia Police and Gloucestershire Constabulary was held at Fish Hill in Evesham last Sunday, and took place as a response to a number of serious and fatal crashes involving motorbikes in the Cotswolds.

The forces launched the operation with it designed to provide a "highly visible deterrent to speeders and anti-social riders and drivers".

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More than 50 motorists and motorcyclists were stopped by police and some received enforcement for offences including speeding, number plate issues and inappropriate riding attire.

The forces said the action was taken in support of people living around the area who have complained through their safer neighbourhood team and parish council about noise and speeding issues on the road.

Specialist units involving local safer neighbourhood teams, road policing officers and speed enforcement officers were all involved in the initiative.

After the operation they reported that 23 motorists were caught travelling above the 60mph speed limit which included 19 car drivers and four motorcyclists.

The highest speeds recorded were a car travelling at 79mph and a motorcycle travelling at 94mph.

Thirty motorcyclists were stopped and given safety advice during the course of the operation, including six who were warned and advised regarding number plate offences, and a further rider who was advised for not wearing appropriate riding clothing.

During the operation West Mercia Police officers also carried out sound monitoring using equipment from Highways England, measuring the noise of vehicles and to identify whether speeding traffic results in greater traffic noise.

Sound monitoring was carried out on Fish Hill and in Station Road, Broadway, but police say results had shown speed did not significantly correlate with an increase in noise.

Sergeant Stuart Allen from West Mercia Police said: "This was a very positive operation alongside our colleagues at Gloucestershire Constabulary, and a proactive opportunity to engage with motorists and provide education and enforcement where appropriate.

"It was very encouraging to see the majority of motorists and motorcyclists driving or riding safely and adhering to the speed limit.

"However, operations like this one highlight to the minority who drive/ride dangerously or anti-socially that their activities will not be tolerated.

"It also demonstrates that the police and the Safer Roads Partnership listen to community concern and act upon it where necessary."

In July, a man died on the junction of Buckle Street and the A44 in Broadway, following a crash between two motorbikes and a car.

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That followed warnings from residents fearing fatal crashes including Stow-on-the-Wold resident Peter Thompson, who told us earlier this year that he had seen motorcyclists travelling so fast drivers knees were "actually touching the road" adding they were "using this road as a race track.