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West Sussex Fire Service’s warning to drivers with unrestrained animals

West Sussex Fire Service reminds drivers they may be at risk of large fines if they do not properly restrain their animals when driving.

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Do you know the law when it comes to properly restraining your pets?

We all know and understand the dangers of driving without wearing a seatbelt, and most of us abide by the law when it comes to them. But not so many of us seem to be aware of the law when it comes to properly restraining ‘man’s best friend’.

Research by Dogs Trust reveals that almost half (48%) of UK dog owners could be breaking the Highway Code by not restraining their dogs properly in the car. So what can we do to keep our furry friends restrained when in the car?

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Rule 57 of the Highway Code states: “When in a vehicle make sure dogs or other animals are suitably restrained so they cannot distract you while you are driving or injure you, or themselves, if you stop quickly. A seat belt harness, pet carrier, dog cage or dog guard are ways of restraining animals in cars.”

So, according to the Highway Code, using a ‘seat belt harness, pet carrier, dog cage or dog guard’ are all acceptable ways of obeying the law when taking our pets out for a drive.

West Sussex Fire Service has taken to Twitter to remind West Sussex’s dog (and cat) owners to keep their animals properly restrained in the car.

Failure to follow the law means drivers could be pulled over by police for driving without proper control of the car which will land them £1,000 fine.

As mentioned in West Sussex Fire’s Tweet it could mean ‘failing to drive with due care and attention’ which carries a maximum fine of £2,500 and nine penalty points.

In more extreme cases, it could lead to a driving ban and a compulsory re-test – drivers may be invalidating their insurance.

Were you aware of these laws? And will it change the way you drive with your canine companion?

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West Sussex’s exciting new crowdfunding platform

From a local event or festival to bringing a disused space back to life, West Sussex has a new way to fund and support local projects.

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Have you ever had an idea that you think would be fantastic for your local area but struggle when it comes to funding the project? Don’t panic. There’s a new way to get the funding.

West Sussex Crowd is a new crowdfunding platform where you can share your community idea and offer neighbours, local businesses and other interested parties the opportunity to pledge their support to make your idea a reality.

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Ideas can now be uploaded online at www.westsussexcrowd.org.uk

Debbie Kennard, Cabinet Member for Safer, Stronger Communities, said:

“This is a really exciting time for groups and projects in West Sussex.

“If you have an idea which will benefit your community, whether it’s a renovation project, a festival or even equipment for a club, then upload it to West Sussex Crowd.

“Groups have already put started using the site and I hope we will see many more crowdfunding campaigns launch on there soon.”

West Sussex County Council is making £330,000 Community Initiative Fund available to pledge to projects on the site.

This will replace its previous funding initiatives including the Small Grants Fund and the Members’ Big Society Fund.

Free events for groups with project ideas who would like to start crowdfunding will run in each District and Borough area during May.

Places can be booked here:

Mid Sussex Community Workshop, Monday 14th May, 10am – 12noon
Chichester Community Workshop, Tuesday 15th May, 9.30am – 11.30am
Horsham Community Workshop, Thursday 17th May, 10am – 12noon
Crawley Community Workshop, Thursday 17th May, 2pm – 4pm
Arun Community Workshop, Friday 18th May, 10am – 12noon
Adur/Worthing Community Workshop, Friday 18th May, 2pm – 4pm

Those who have a project idea but are unable to attend an event are encouraged to register for one of these free webinars:

Royal Society of Arts Online Crowdfunding Workshop (with Spacehive taking part), Thursday 19th April, 6pm – 7pm
• Spacehive’s Webinar: How to run an awesome crowdfunding campaign, Wednesday 25th April, 12noon – 1pm

A formal launch event will take place on Wednesday 9 May from 5.30pm to 7pm at St. Paul’s, Worthing.

To find out more and to upload your project to West Sussex Crowd, visit: www.westsussexcrowd.org.uk

If you have further queries about getting started or would like to discuss your project ideas, please e mail communities@westsussex.gov.uk

Keep up to date with all the latest news.

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