THIS was the moment a woman was snared by police in what appeared to be a modern-day version of jousting.

But the woman was not taking part in the medieval sport, instead she was caught dangerously holding a massive pole out of a taxi window as she tried to transport the stair bannister home.

Police caught the taxi with its precarious load as they carried out a road safety crackdown - codenamed Operation Calypso - in Basildon.
Traffic cops, stationed in Felmores at the junction with East Mayne, carried out stop checks as they attempted to crack down on motorists flouting the law by speeding, not wearing seatbelts, using mobile phones and a series of other motoring offences.

During the crackdown on Tuesday officers pulled over 194 vehicles and found 62 had no MOT test certificates, 52 motorists were not wearing a seatbelt and 23 were snared using mobile phones.

Police also found 15 vehicles had illegal window tints, which they were made to peel off.

But officers got the greatest shock when they spotted the taxi travelling along East Mayne.

The female passenger sat in the back was holding her six foot long bannister pole out of the window, oblivious of the danger she was causing to other motorists.

Police pulled over the black cab and fined the driver £60 for having an insecure load. He was also given three penalty points on his licence.