August is National Road Victim Month, an awareness month placing focus on the devastating and lifelong impact of road crashes. Fire and Safety Centre would like to contribute towards this cause by sharing 19 simple road safety tips for drivers.
Run by the charity RoadPeace, National Road Victim Month is held every August with that month being chosen following the death of Princess Diana, which took place on August 31st, 1997. Not only that, the world’s first motor vehicle fatality and Britain’s first road death both occurred during August. As part of the awareness month, the charity are hosting a remembrance ceremony on August 31st, on the steps to the Liverpool Anglican Cathedral.
In 2015, there were an average of 5 fatalities and 61 serious injuries every single day due to road incidents. That’s 1,732 fatalities and 22,137 serious injuries in a single year in the UK. There’s no single underlying factor that’s behind road casualties, there are several influences: the distance people travel, the different modes of transport used, and the behaviour of drivers and pedestrians. Whatever the cause, these numbers are too high and greater public awareness of road safety is crucial to combatting this.
Our 19 Simple Road Safety Tips for Drivers
- Always wear your seat belt
- Always keep a sensible gap between your car and the car in front of you – 2 seconds is good…
- …Unless the weather is bad, then you should leave a 4 second gap
- Use your mirrors to see what other drivers are doing, always expect the unexpected
- Keep a hazard warning triangle in your car in case of an emergency
- Keep an eye out for cyclists and leave plenty of space when overtaking
- Plan your trip, schedule time for breaks and food
- Ensure your seat and mirrors are configured properly before switching the engine on
- Follow signs and instructions at all times – stop when told to stop, and so on
- Be patient – not everybody is as good a driver as you think you may be
- Drive predictably – make sure other drivers know what you plan on doing
- Use headlights when necessary, such as night time or in fog
- Make sure your vehicle is in working order before embarking on a journey
- Take out annual Breakdown cover – just in case of a fault with your vehicle
- Don’t use phones or other electronic devices while driving
- Don’t speed – it gives you less time to react and can increase the severity of a crash
- Use hands-free devices to answer any calls
- Never drive under the influence of alcohol or drugs
- Never drive if you’re tired
THINK! is a campaign devised by the Department for Transport, and it provides plenty of resources and tips for improving road safety. Their aim is to encourage safer behaviour to reduce the number of people injured and killed on our roads each year. Check out THINK! for more handy information!