Our latest data for the second quarter of 2022 has revealed that turnaround times of requests for information have increased for more police forces.
In our last report, we identified that the slowest response time was Greater Manchester Police. They have improved their turnaround, though it still remains reasonably high. Their median response time at present is 80 days (Q1 median: 95 days) and they continue to advise of significant turnarounds of between 16 and 20 weeks.
The force with the slowest median response time in Q2 is Sussex Police, averaging 104 days. It is important to note that this police force do not allow you to request a report until the case is complete, so the turnaround times may be skewed. Nonetheless, they are advising of significant delays in their turnaround at the moment, of around 16 weeks.
Similarly, police forces whose response times have worsened are Cumbria and Humberside Police, with median response times of 94 and 99 days respectively. We have not been made aware by either force of any significant delays in their response.
As with our last report, many forces with significant delays are attributing this to staff shortages; they often have a very small team of employees dealing with requests for collision reports.
Since our last report, 18 police forces have improved their response time. Of particular note, all the police forces that we outlined as improving in our last report continue to shorten their turnaround times – which is again encouraging and indicative of police commitment to improving their service.
The greatest improvements on turnaround since our last report are for Nottinghamshire Police and Devon and Cornwall Police, whose median response times have improved by 68 days and 42 days, respectively. Each force does continue to advise of significant delays, though it is positive and encouraging to see that they are making headway and improving their service.
In contrast to the above improvements, some forces’ turnaround times have dramatically worsened. The most significant of these is Hampshire Police, whose median turnaround time is now 80 days, compared to 19 days in the last quarter. They have outlined that they are experiencing delays and aim to fulfil requests within 12 weeks, though this often is not the case. West Mercia’s turnaround time has also worsened by 21 days.
The number of cases which remain outstanding after three months has increased since our last report, though it must be considered that we are regularly being instructed within days of an incident having occurred. Police forces have a statutory time period of 6 months to investigate collisions and present any potential prosecutions. As such, we accept that we will have more cases outstanding and these continue to be chased on a regular basis.
However, something which must also be considered is the effectiveness of chasing collision reports; some police forces ask that we do not chase reports and to have faith in their process. Several forces refuse to provide updates at all – examples of such forces are Greater Manchester Police, Northamptonshire Police, and West Mercia Police.
The latest RPR development released to existing clients this quarter is set to reduce turnarounds and deliver savings massively, watch this space as we start to report on those turnaround reductions!