The annual campaign reminds pedestrians, cyclists and motorcyclists – especially children and young people on their school journeys – to make sure they can be seen during the winter months
With the clocks going back on Sunday 25 October, the days getting shorter and winter weather starting to set in, road users are becoming less visible to motorists.
The number of deaths and injuries on our roads increases sharply as the evenings draw in and the weather deteriorates, with pedestrian and vehicle collisions usually peaking in October and November. Last winter 345 people were involved in collisions in Plymouth and 16 per cent of those were young people.
Councillor Brian Vincent, Cabinet Member for Street Scene, said: “We work hard to keep Plymouth’s roads safe, with initiatives such as 20mph limits and improved cycling and walking links. However, there is always an increased risk of casualties as the nights draw in and visibility worsens.
“The peak time for a collision is during the evening rush hour – between 5pm and 6pm. We’re running this campaign to ensure everyone can be seen on the road and that we all make an extra effort to look out for each other this winter.”
PC Ian Baggott, Road Casualty Reduction Officer for Devon and Cornwall Police, said: “Motorists need to be alert to other road users, such as young children on their school journey, elderly shoppers, people in a hurry and parents with toddlers. Remember, they may not see you, so slow right down, particularly at junctions where pedestrians cross and on roads near schools and colleges.
“Motorists should ensure their lights are working, clean and properly adjusted, so they do not dazzle others. They also need to make sure their windscreens are clean and not misted up, so they can see properly. We are urging all road users to follow this advice and take preventative action to reduce risks on Plymouth’s roads this winter.”
Be Safe, Be Seen and follow these tips when walking and cycling:
- Always choose well-lit routes
- Cross the road at a designated crossing place, if possible
- Don’t cross between parked cars, as you are more likely to be hidden in shadows or blocked from view
- Carry a torch
- Keep away from the kerb
- Wear bright or fluorescent clothing in daylight or poor light
- Wear reflective clothing at night; it shows up in car headlights. Fluorescent clothing is not as visible after dark
- Always use lights when cycling in the dark, in the rain or if the weather is overcast – white lights at the front and red at the rear. Make sure your lights are working – it is illegal to ride on the road with no lights in the dark.
- Take extra care at roundabouts and junctions.
Our road safety team and Radio Plymouth are visiting schools across the city to promote the Be Safe, Be Seen campaign.