Road users are being urged to do their bit to reduce the strain on the emergency services in the coming week and months.
The campaign, supported by key road safety stakeholders and the Met Police, stresses the need to take extra care, using the roads safely and only when essential during the coronavirus pandemic.
While levels of traffic are expected to reduce under the Government’s lockdown measures, some will still need their cars to travel to work and to the shops, while some people could also return to cycling.
Yet, statistics show 160,597 people were killed or injured on Great Britain’s roads in 2019 – an average of 440 people each day.
To reduce the number of road casualties during these unprecedented times, Road Safety GB is urging all road users to only travel when essential, while for those who must travel, the plea is to do everything to avoid collisions and casualties.
Advice includes to:
- Always drive at an appropriate speed
- Always wear a seatbelt
- Never drive under the influence of alcohol or drugs
- Never use a mobile phone behind the wheel
The campaign is being reinforced by key organisations, including Brake and DriveTech.
Joshua Harris, director of campaigns at Brake, said: “With traffic reduced from the coronavirus pandemic the number of crashes on our roads may fall but needless deaths and serious injuries are still happening, devastating families and burdening the NHS.
“We urge people to stay home and stay safe but if a car trip is essential, always make sure to belt up, put your phone out of reach and drive at a safe speed.”
Colin Paterson, head of marketing at DriveTech, added: “DriveTech wholeheartedly supports the RSGB’s Take Extra Care initiative in particularly tough times for us all.
“The roads are noticeably quieter and this can have the negative effect of making some drivers feel that the ‘days of the open road’ are back, albeit in strangely surreal circumstances, and they throw caution to the wind.
“There’s never been a more valid time to ‘stay calm and carry on… safely’ allowing the emergency services to focus their efforts on critical health support.”