Sunday 29 January 2023
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Media Release

Road safety event to promote awareness of road safety issues


MEDIA RELEASE: The views expressed in this article are those of the author and not Bailiwick Express, and the text is reproduced exactly as supplied to us

The UK Road Safety Charity Brake organises an annual week-long event designed to promote awareness of road safety issues. Their 2013 campaign has the slogan ‘Tune In’ and is all about raising awareness of the possible consequences of being distracted when using our roads. The headline message is “we're all human: we daydream, get side-tracked, run late and make mistakes. But on the roads, distractions can be fatal.”

The UK Road Safety Charity Brake organises an annual week-long event designed to promote awareness of road safety issues. Their 2013 campaign has the slogan ‘Tune In’ and is all about raising awareness of the possible consequences of being distracted when using our roads. The headline message is “we're all human: we daydream, get side-tracked, run late and make mistakes. But on the roads, distractions can be fatal.”

The Environment Department is supporting the message that when using roads, we all need to tune in to road safety and give it our full attention whatever mode of transport we choose to use. Many Guernsey road users will undertake the same journeys each and every day and it is easy to become distracted and travel on “autopilot”.

Driver distraction is a major cause of death and serious injury in the UK. Driving is the most dangerous thing that most of us do on a daily basis and requires our full attention, but many drivers have a sense of over-confidence and feel cocooned in their vehicles, so attempting to multi-task is common.

While it's illegal to use a hand-held phone to text or call at the wheel, in the UK around a third of drivers flout this law, and many others use a hands-free kit, despite both activities causing a distraction. Other distracting activities such as eating or smoking at the wheel have been shown to increase the risk of crashing, yet lots of drivers own up to it.

But distraction isn't just an issue for drivers. For people on foot and bicycle, being sidetracked by your mobile, or not being able to hear due to listening to music, or forgetting to hold a child's hand, can be lethal; negotiating roads needs our full care and attention!

The Department would therefore like to ask all road users to ‘Tune In’ to Road Safety and not just during Road Safety Week.

The Guernsey road safety charity Living Streets is continuing with its ‘ Be Safe, Be Seen’ message and the States is supporting their fund raising efforts with a bright clothes dress down day on Friday 22nd November. Funds raised will be used by Living Streets to purchase high visibility items for those who take part and for school children.

The Guernsey Police are focusing additional resources on road safety, education and enforcement during the week - including watching out for drivers using mobile phones and those who are distracted by eating, drinking or reading at the wheel.

They will also be undertaking speed checks in school zones and placing out the electronic speed display units kindly provided to the States by Lagan Construction. Officers will be out and about educating and enforcing on the issue of driving and parking on footpaths.

Minister for the Environment Department, Roger Domaille said, “It is easy for us all to take travelling around the Island for granted and not fully concentrate on the real risks that might be ahead. Road safety charities are raising important issues here that are extremely relevant and not only during the weeklong event. I would urge all road users to get themselves seen and to ensure that they are concentrating fully on what is going on around them. In this way we can all help to minimise the number of accidents on our roads which regrettably can sometimes have all too tragic consequences.”

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