In the dark about road safety?

Stuart Smith News

With the clocks going back and as we head into Winter, many more of us are travelling in reduced daylight.

In addition to low sun and often poor weather conditions, the reduced visibility coupled with increased pedestrian volume and movement visiting city centre premises, means that sadly the number of pedestrian road safety collisions are at their highest during this period; increasing by 40% in November and staying heightened over December and January.

Though this is not a situation that is by any means unique to the North-east, Road Safety North East Scotland (RSNES) and Getabout have joined forces to highlight the issue to residents over the winter months.

Over the 5 year period of 2012 – 2016, reported pedestrian casualty trends have more than halved within Aberdeen, but there is always work to be done to reduce this figure even further.

The safety campaign focuses on Aberdeen City Centre, where the majority of these accidents occur, primarily around Union Street along with junction-based locations around Crown Street, Bridge Street and a concentration around Market Street and bordering roads. The majority of the accidents take place between 3pm and 7pm, with Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays showing particular peaks.

Poor observations on both the part of pedestrians and drivers was the most common causation factor recorded in the collisions.

Pedestrians

  • Don’t rush or take chances
  • Be alert, not distracted – keep your head up and make sure you can hear traffic
  • Be seen – carry or wear something that’s bright, fluorescent or reflective
  • Cross safely and try to use recognised crossings – avoid crossing near parked cars and busy junctions.

Drivers

  • Be extra vigilant for pedestrians who may be harder to see
  • Slow down in busy areas
  • Be seen – turn on your headlights at twilight and in poor weather conditions
  • Keep windows clean, inside and out – dirty windows increase glare and are more prone to steaming up.
  • Have your eyes checked – night vision decreases with age.

You can follow RSNES on Twitter at: https://twitter.com/roadsafetynes

Road Safety North East Scotland is a partnership consisting of Aberdeen City Council, Aberdeenshire Council, Moray Council, NESTRANS, NHS Grampian, North Safety Camera Unit, Police Scotland and the Scottish Fire and Rescue Service, who seek to promote road safety and road casualty reduction across the North East of Scotland.