Road Safety Tips
Why is Road Safety Important?
Road Safety is important, there is no other way about it. Most people use roads every day of their lives, we use them so much that we forget how dangerous they can be. Whether you are walking, driving or cycling you need to be aware of the dangers of the road.
In 2018, there were 25,511 serious road traffic accidents in the UK and that is only those reported by the police. Without road safety, this statistic would be even higher.
Take a look below at some helpful tips on road safety and how to stay safe as a pedestrian, motorist or passenger.
Stick to the Speed Limit
You may think it is okay to drive slightly over the speed limit. By slowing down from 35mph to 30mph you are decreasing the likelihood of killing a pedestrian if you hit them by 50%. Experienced drivers should have a good knowledge of hazard perception. Be cautious of those around you and check your mirrors regularly.
Put Your Mobile Phone Away
Do not make any phone calls whilst you are driving, not only is it illegal it’s incredibly dangerous. Even if you use a hands-free phone whilst you are driving, it is still a distraction. Making or receiving a call for just one second can divert your attention from the road, therefore, causing an accident. Don’t use your phone under any circumstances!
Don’t Drive Tired
Take extra care when driving tired, ill or for a long time. Take regular 15 – 20 minute breaks, especially if you are driving for over 2 hours. Tiredness is a big cause of road accidents each year. This also applies if you drive in the early morning, shortly after waking up. Driving tired can be as bad as driving drunk.
Wear Your Seatbelt
As the driver, it is your responsibility for the safety of your passengers. Ensure that they all have their seatbelts whilst you are driving. If a passenger doesn’t have their seatbelt on when a crash occurs, they are in danger of injuring themselves and those in the front seats. Never cut corners when it comes to child passengers, always make sure they have the relevant child/baby car seat fitted.
Check Your Blind Spot Every Time
Before taking off always check your blind spot. Keep an eye out when driving in areas with a lot of parked cars or pedestrians.
Watch Out For Pedestrians
Children who don’t know about the dangers of the roads are prone to running out into the road when playing or coming out of school. Better practice near roads can help lower the risks of pedestrians being injured or killed. Try to mainly use designated crossings when crossing roads and where the relevant fluorescent clothing when walking at night.
Driving Under the Influence
Any amount of alcohol intake can affect your driving, even if you are technically “under the limit”. To lower the risk of you causing an accident don’t drink and drive at all.
For more day to day health and safety tips, take a look at our news page for more informative blogs here.
What Are Some Road Safety Rules?
Driving safety rules are also important as a pedestrian. Take a look at some important things you need to know to stay safe on the roads.
- Know your signals – learn the road signs and how car lights work.
- Cross at the right place. Never cross between parked cars or on a bend. Use crossings when appropriate.
- Teach your kids not to run into or along the road. If there isn’t a pavement, don’t walk there.
Bike Road Safety Tips
Bike Safety is important when it comes to keeping road users safe. Educating yourself on Bike Safety can help reduce the number of injuries and fatalities involving bikes on the road.
Take a look below at some helpful tips on how to be “Bike Smart”.
Wear a Helmet
Protect yourself and wear a helmet. Make sure it is properly fitted so it can be fully effective if needed. Helmets are vital in preventing serious or potentially fatal head and brain injuries. Your helmet needs to be replaced around every five years due to the materials degrading. It is also advised that if your helmet is dropped or involved in an accident it should be replaced.
Learn The Rules Of The Road
Although you don’t have to pass a driving test as you would as a motorcyclist or motorist, you are still a vehicle on the road. Therefore for the safety of you and others, you need to know the rules of the road.
Make sure you are riding with the flow of traffic, don’t think because you aren’t in a car you can skip red lights or drive over a busy crossing. If you are turning make sure you signal with your hands well in advance before a turn so other vehicle users know what you are doing. Make eye contact with the driver where possible for better communication. Keep up your observations when entering streets and control your speed regularly with your brakes.
Does Your Bike Fit You?
As a bike user, you should keep in mind a few constraints when selecting a bike that fits you.
- There should be 1-2 inches gap between you and the bar on the bike. This goes up to 5 inches if you are selecting a mountain bike.
- When adjusting your seat, make sure that your fully stretched out leg has a slight bend.
Do a quick audit of the bike to make sure it is safe to use:
- Handlebars should be firm and easy to turn.
- Wheels should be secure and straight.
- Check that your brakes work properly and are not worn unevenly.
Be Visible At All Times
Do not assume that other people can see you. Enhance your visibility as much as possible by kitting out yourself and your bike with reflective materials and fluorescent colours.
Stay Alert To Stay Safe
- Avoid wearing headphones, they can drown out the noise of traffic and pedestrians.
- The road isn’t always dry and flat so watch out for any potential obstacles in the terrain. Keep an eye out for potholes, railway tracks, wet leaves or drains.
- Take extra care when driving on ice, wet surfaces or snow. Lower your speed and allow extra time on your journey.
- Proceed slowly to railway tracks an cross them at a 90-degree angle for better visibility.
Bike Safety: Motorcyclists
Here are some tips for motorcyclists on keeping safe on the road:
- Make sure you are wearing all the right safety gear. A crash on the tarmac can shred unsuitable clothes and skin in an instant. Bikers must wear protective boots, gloves, pants and jacket.
- Make sure you are visible at all times and you have a suitable helmet on. Find out all you need to know about helmet safety ratings here.
- Make sure you regularly observe the road when driving and when conducting manoeuvres.