'Lack of trained drivers' continues to slow Havering police response times 

Dawn raids across east London, Essex and Hertfordshire kick drug running into the long grass. Pictur

A Havering Council panel was told that the size of the borough and a lack of officers that have passed advanced driving tests were among the reasons behind the police's slow response times - Credit: MPS

Police in Havering continue to take too long to respond to calls, with the force missing its target for the October to December period last year by over 20 per cent. 

Concerns were raised at a previous Havering Council crime and disorder sub-committee meeting, in which Ch Insp Lisa Butterfield said one of the main causes of the issue was a lack of officers with advanced driving credentials. 

At a recent meeting of the sub-committee on March 14, figures were presented showing against a target of 90pc, only 69.4pc of calls marked ‘immediate’ were reached within 15 minutes, compared with 79.5pc the year before. 

Det Ch Supt Paul Trevers said the size of the borough and lack of trained drivers continues to have an impact.

Though he did tell the panel that as of Friday (March 11), 19 additional driving courses had been granted, which he claimed would “hopefully” help address the problem. 

He added while it’s "really important we get there quickly”, it is not the only marker of a successful response. 

“What I’m now trying to develop a culture of, and with some success, is when we get to those calls, we investigate the crime properly,” he said.