Road Safety Advisory Panel met for the tenth time on 8 July 2004. The
meeting included discussion on the recently published casualty data for
2003 and ways of reducing the number of road accident fatalities. The
next meeting will take place in the autumn 2004. The minutes of RSAP
meetings and the papers presented to it are posted on the DfT website at
The Government's Road Safety Strategy, Tomorrow's Roads - Safer for
Everyone, launched in March 2000 included a commitment to evaluate every
three years progress in delivering the strategy and towards achieving
the casualty reduction targets set for 2010. The first review, published
on 7 April 2004, concluded that we are on track to deliver the
challenging casualty reduction targets set for 2010, but that we must
not be complacent.
LOCAL TRANSPORT PLANS
Local Transport Plans (LTPs) are the key mechanisms for planning and
delivering better transport at the local level, in England outside
London. The first LTPs were submitted in July 2000 and set out targets
and objectives for the five year period between April 2001 and March
2006. Local transport authorities are required to provide Annual
Progress Reports (APRs) detailing what progress has been made towards
meeting their objectives. As part of this process, local transport
authorities must demonstrate that their transport planning takes into
account road safety concerns. In December 2003 Tony McNulty announced a
£1.9bn capital spending package for local transport in 2004-2005. This
funding means that local authorities can deliver better road safety
outcomes not only through physical road safety measures, but also by
providing more attractive and safer alternative transport solutions such
as improved walking, cycling and public transport facilities. It adds to
the £4.54 billion for local transport announced in the last three
The Guidance for the Second Round of Local Transport Plans (subject to
the consultation) identifies Safer Roads as one of the Government's/LGA's
Shared Priorities for Local Transport Planning. The guidance requires
local transport authorities to identify suitable transport packages for
reducing accidents on local roads as a way of improving liveability
particularly in disadvantaged areas.
Draft LTP Guidance is now available at the following link in html
version (the deadline for responses is 8 October).
CHILD ROAD SAFETY
The Department's child road safety action plan, Child Road Safety:
Achieving the 2010 Target, was published in March 2003.
Pilot network of child pedestrian training schemes
Children's training, for the third tranche of schemes, commenced at the
start of the summer term. Under this research project, training will
have been undertaken from the summer term of 2002 through to early 2007.
Road safety education
In partnership with police and road safety officers, the Driving
Standards Agency (DSA) has been implementing its Schools Programme
(Arrive Alive) aimed at young people aged 15-17, addressing driving and
road safety issues. Since April 2003 the Agency has broadened the scheme
to include drivers over 50 - which is known as Arrive Alive Classic.
Some 4,500 Arrive Alive presentations had been delivered by the end of
March 2003. DSA plans to deliver 6,000 presentations in 2003/04 and
6,000 for the 2004/05 period.
The original plans for the road safety lesson plans website for primary
and secondary schools are now complete. The design of the website and
the sample packs will be updated to reflect the results of the research
we recently carried out with teachers. We are currently exploring
additional lesson plan opportunities to further develop the resource.
Back to Index
SAFER ROUTES TO SCHOOL/SCHOOL TRAVEL PLANS
The School Travel Advisory Group (STAG) was set up in 1998 to find ways
to encourage walking, cycling or taking the bus or train to school. The
main recommendations of the STAG report published in 2000 were the
provision of better travel facilities at schools, better and more
affordable bus travel to school, better training for bus drivers,
improved enforcement of speed, parking and other traffic regulations,
developing children's skills, understanding and awareness needed to
behave safely and responsibly in traffic, and raising driver awareness
of safety issues.
The three Government Departments involved (DfT, DfES and DH) have been
taking forward a programme of action including research, guidance and
support for local authorities and schools in response to the
recommendations contained in the STAG report. The road safety strategy
Tomorrow' s Roads - safer for everyone, published in March 2000 sets out
the detailed programme for taking action to improve child road safety.
Guidance on full local transport plans asked local authorities to
include in their plans an integrated strategy for reducing car use and
improving children's safety on the journey to school, having regard to
STAG's aim and proposals for monitoring progress. Local authorities
receive funding to help them implement school travel related capital
initiatives through the local transport planning system.
In February 2001 the then DETR awarded local authority bursaries to fund
57 school travel plan co-ordinator posts and 17 joint school/workplace
travel plan co-ordinator posts up to the end of March 2004.
In September 2003 the Secretaries of State for Transport and Education
launched their joint Travelling to School initiative which sets out how
they want to bring about a step change in home to school travel patterns
to cut congestion and pollution and allow many more children to take
regular exercise. Key features of initiative are:
-- DfT and DfES are supporting Travelling to School initiative by
providing £7.5 m a year for at least 2004-05 and 2005-06 to pay for
around 250 local authority based school travel advisers (STAs) who are
working with individual schools to help them develop and implement
school travel plans The STAs are supported by a network of Regional STAs.
-- DfES paid around £14m in small capital grants in June 2004 to
schools with an approved school travel plan to help pay for items such
as secure cycle parking and lockers and will make available up to £20m
of grants available in 2005.
The grants were included in schools' devolved formula capital payments
in June 2004. Each eligible primary school received £3,750 plus £5 per
pupil, and each secondary school £5,000 plus £5 per pupil. Schools
were notified by DfES of the amount within the capital grant that had
been allocated for completing the School Travel Plan (STP). Any queries
relating to the STP grants payments should be referred to Hugh Jackson
Any queries relating to the Travelling to School initiative more
generally should be directed to either Hugh Jackson at email@example.com
or Margaret Longes at firstname.lastname@example.org.
STAG has now been disbanded and DfT/DfES have set up the School Travel
Expert Panel (STEP) to act as a sounding board and advise on the
implementation of the new Travelling to School initiative.
The Department (in conjunction with the DfES and STEP) is currently
conducting a review of safer routes to school communications.
NEIGHBOURHOOD ROAD SAFETY INITIATIVE - ROAD SAFETY RESPONSE TO THE
The PSA target for the department includes tackling the significantly
higher incidence (of casualties) in disadvantaged communities.
As a result, on 25 October 2002, the Department launched the Dealing
with Disadvantage initiative, now known as the Neighbourhood Road Safety
Initiative, in Greater Manchester. £17.6 million has been allocated
over three years (from March 2003) to help authorities deal with road
safety issues in their disadvantaged areas. Greater Manchester was
chosen for the launch, as 10 of the worst authorities in the country for
child pedestrian problems are in this area. The rate of child pedestrian
casualties has been shown to be at its highest in disadvantaged areas.
The Department is working in partnership with the councils to identify
causes and tailored solutions to the problems. £12 million has been
allocated to the Greater Manchester area to tackle these issues. This
includes a central road safety team to develop innovative interventions.
More general guidance was issued to local highway authorities, at the
beginning of April 2003, as part of the APR guidance for that year. Four
further authorities, Bradford, Liverpool, Nottingham and Sandwell,
received allocations totalling £4.3 million in February 2004. A further
council, Stoke-on-Trent, was allocated £1 million in April 2004 and
this completes this stage of the Neighbourhood Road Safety Initiative.
The Government's response to the Transport Select Committee, published
in 2002, outlined the work either currently being undertaken or work
being planned for the future to reduce the effects of inappropriate and
Rural areas remain a particular concern and work is progressing to
address this. Consultants are currently working on the development of a
framework to assess what speeds are appropriate together with what
speeds are actually being driven on rural roads. A new Traffic Advisory
Leaflet specifically addressing the concerns about village speed limits
has also now been published.
In addition, we are reviewing and updating the Department's advice on
the setting of local speed limits (Circular Roads 1/93). The work
currently being done on rural speed management together with advice on
urban speed limits such as 20mph zones will be included and we expect to
have a draft available upon which to consult later this year.
To promote speed limit awareness the DfT will be re-launching the 'Know
your Speed Limit' poster campaign. This will take the form of a series
of posters giving information on the speed limit for the road, and
vehicle speed limits. We also plan to produce a replacement for
''Killing speed Saving Lives'' as an information tool for members of the
public. We expect to have this available by spring 2005.
The third year evaluation report of the national safety camera programme
was published on 15 June. It found a 40% reduction in the number of
people killed or seriously injured at safety camera sites (equating to
around 870 fewer KSIs per annum), a 33% reduction in the number of
personal injury collisions at camera sites (equating to around 4,300
fewer PICs per annum) and a 35% reduction in the number of pedestrian
KSIs at camera sites.
The Handbook of rules and guidelines for the safety camera netting off
programme is currently being revised. The final revision will be
complete in October when it will be published.
With the safety camera programme now covering most of England and Wales,
it has been decided that the Scottish model of a Programme Office should
be followed and put in place south of the border. This will be new
resource aimed at ensuring the programme runs smoothly. It is expected
that the new Programme Office will be up and running by the end of this
The Government announced in March 2002 that it had decided not to make
any change to the drink-drive legal limit (currently 80mg/100ml [equivalent
to 0.08% BAC] ). The Government believes that strengthened
enforcement of existing controls, together with high profile publicity
campaigns and driver education, is the appropriate way of reducing
drink-related crashes and casualties. It is planning, amongst other
things, to strengthen police powers to enforce drink-drive laws,
including provision for 'evidential' roadside breath testing. At
present, tests at the roadside are only for 'screening' purposes and, if
these tests are positive, motorists have to be taken to a police station
to provide a further sample of breath that can be used in evidence. The
Government believes that modern breath testers could provide for
admissible evidence to be taken at the roadside without the need to take
offenders to a police station. This will allow the police to target more
drink drive suspects for the same level of resources. The Government has
also extended publicity campaigns to include the targeting of specific
groups, and has commissioned a study into breath alcohol interlock
devices as a means of preventing re-offending. These devices will
immobilise a vehicle if alcohol is detected on a driver's breath.
The Government is looking at the structure of driving offences provided
for by the Road Traffic Acts. The Home Secretary has commissioned a
review looking at all aspects of bad driving offences, including both
dangerous and careless driving, the results of which are expected to be
published before the end of 2004. A public consultation exercise will
then follow on possible outcomes identified by the review. Amongst other
sources, the review will draw upon work already undertaken for DfT by
the Transport Research Laboratory on the way in which the ''Dangerous
Driving'' offences have been used by the police, the prosecution
agencies and the courts since their introduction in the Road Traffic Act
DRUGS AND DRIVING
The programme of research continues. An ''Impairment Bulletin'' is
produced periodically to cover all research on alcohol drugs and fatigue
which would be more user-friendly than individual research project
findings. Copies of the bulletin can be obtained from Joanna Asiedu,
Road Safety Division, Telephone 020 7944 2038. Police forces continue to
train officers in Drug Influence Recognition Techniques and Field
Impairment Testing skills. The police now have the powers to require
drivers to provide samples for screening and/or participate in Field
Impairment Testing at the roadside. However, before the police use
mandatory Field Impairment Testing, a code of practice needs to be
finalised. A roadside screening device specification is also being
prepared by the Home Office.
MOBILE PHONES AND DRIVING
A new offence of using a hand-held mobile phone while driving came into
force on 1 December 2003. Some FAQs on this topic may be viewed on the
Department's website at: http://www.dft.gov.uk/stellent/groups/dft_rdsafety/documents/page/dft_rdsafety_025216.hcsp
A copy of the legislation may also be accessed from Q17.
DRIVER TRAINING AND TESTING
The Road Safety Strategy recognises that better driving skills and
better driving behaviour would make an enormous difference in helping to
reduce the number of road casualties. The Department considers that the
best way forward is to improve the education environment so that
learners have access to a more consistent and better standard of
training. DSA is liasing with the driver training industry about
modernising the arrangements for those wishing to become approved
driving instructors (ADIs) and for those already in the profession. A
computer-based hazard perception assessment will be introduced for
existing ADIs early in 2005.
DSA will also consider what further learning rescues might be made
available to learners and trainers, building on the voluntary logbook
initiative. The regulatory arrangements for driving instructors will
also be reviewed to ensure that the public can have confidence that
driver training services that they are buying are of the highest
DSA introduced changes to the practical driving test from 1 September
2003. These are part of a package of measures introduced by the European
Commission in 2000. Candidates are now required to demonstrate knowledge
and understanding of how to carry out simple vehicle or machine checks -
at the start of the test candidates are asked two questions about the
vehicle or machine checks they would carry out before driving or riding.
For tests involving a trailer, the uncoupling/re-coupling exercise was
revised - candidates have to park alongside the trailer and then drive
forward and re-couple. In addition, candidates for lorry tests are
required to park in a simulated loading bay.
A hazard perception testing element was introduced into the theory test
in November 2002. The pass-mark was raised in planned stages throughout
2003, with the final increase taking place on 1 September. A free
information video, explaining how the new theory test operates, was sent
to all candidates for a period up until May 2003. The official training
material, entitled Roadsense, is available from high street outlets in
the form of a video/workbook package. Roadsense was made available in
DVD format in June 2003. The question bank for the multiple choice
element of the theory test is refreshed annually - latest changes for
the theory test for lorries and buses were made in April 2004 and for
cars and motorcycles in July 2004.
DSA continues to promote road safety messages to young people with the
Arrive Alive programme of pre-driver presentations and through the Pass
Plus scheme for newly qualified drivers.
For older drivers, the Department has issued new advice on safe driving
''Drive on!'' and encourages the use of refresher courses. The advice is
available on the Department's website at: http://www.thinkroadsafety.gov.uk/advice/olderdrivers01htm
DSA launched its Arrive Alive Classic programme in spring 2003. The
programme is aimed at the over 50's.
WORK RELATED ROAD SAFETY
Guidance ''DRIVING AT WORK - Managing Work-Related Road Safety'' is
available on HSE's website at: http://www.hse.gov.uk/pubns/indg382.pdf
or from HSE Books, PO Box 1999, Sudbury, Suffolk CO10 2WA (01787
The Department is currently working with a group of RSOs to develop new
publicity materials for promoting the work-related road safety message.
DSA established a voluntary register of driving instructors specialising
in fleet driver training in April 2002. This will be made mandatory when
a suitable legislative opportunity arises.
DSA is also leading the UK's involvement within the EU in the
development of a Training Directive aimed at compulsory initial training
and periodic retraining of professional drivers of lorries, buses,
minibuses and coaches. Once the terms of the Directive are finalised,
DSA will consult about how to transpose it into domestic law. This
Directive entered into force on 10 September 2003, and must be
transposed into domestic legislation by 10 September 2006. DSA is now
engaged in a series of discussions with industry on how best to
implement the Directive. A Consultation Paper outlining proposals for
implementation will be issued shortly.
The Department consulted in August 2003 on implementing section 110 of
the Railways and Transport Safety Act 2003. This provides for the
replacement of the existing exemption for those making local rounds of
deliveries with a maximum distance that may be travelled before a seat
belt must be worn by those collecting or delivering anything. A decision
on the results of the consultation is due to be published shortly.
EU Directive 2003/20/EC, dated 8 April 2003, amending existing
requirements on the compulsory wearing of seat belts in cars, vans,
lorries and buses/coaches must be implemented in all Member States by
May 2006. The Department plans to consult on the transposition of the
new Directive into GB law later this year. The Directive may be viewed
The Government supports the European Commission proposal to introduce
pedestrian protection requirements in cars. The proposal was adopted by
council in the autumn and published at the end of 2003. The first phase
of the directive will apply to new car types from 2005 and existing
models from 2012. Discussions on the second phase of the directive are
still continuing, but the intention is that this phase should be
introduced from around 2010, and that it should ultimately reduce
pedestrian fatal and serious casualties by 20%.
EUROPEAN NEW CAR ASSESSMENT PROGRAMME (Euro NCAP)
EuroNCAP is a successful collaborative test programme which assesses the
crashworthiness of new cars available in Europe. About 200 models have
been tested since it started in early 1997.
In the latest set of Euro NCAP results, which were published in June
2004 8 of the 12 vehicles tested achieved 5 stars for occupant
protection. At the same time, two vehicles achieved 3 stars pedestrian
protection - more than in any previous set of results.
REVIEW OF ROAD TRAFFIC PENALTIES
The Government published its conclusions to the penalties review in July
2002. In the light of this, the maximum penalty for the offences of
Causing Death by Dangerous Driving, Causing Death by Careless Driving
when under the influence of Drink or Drugs and Aggravated Vehicle Taking
when a death results was increased to 14 years' imprisonment in February
2004. Other changes announced in the report of the penalties review will
be implemented as soon as Parliamentary time permits.
A package of measures improving moped and motorcycle training, testing
and licensing arrangements was implemented in February 2001. In January
2002, DSA produced a motorcycle What If video and workbook and gave
copies to training organisations. The Agency has also produced a leaflet
aimed at those returning to motorcycling after a break. In November
2002, the theory tests for all learner drivers and riders was updated
and now includes an exercise designed to assess hazard perception.
DSA continues to work with the training industry on developing the
training syllabus for pre-test riders and standards for motorcycle
trainers. The Agency is also working in partnership with trainers and
the motorcycle manufacturers to look at improving the standard of
post-test rider training.
A TV commercial and associated trade advertising asking drivers and
riders to look out for each other was launched in May 2002. This
continues to be shown.
The Department has also produced a new public information film, 'Perfect
Day' which has been well received by motorcycling groups. The film will
be shown as a TV filler and made available on tape for RSOs to use. It
will also feature on the Motorcycle Industry Association's new DVD.
The Department has sponsored the 2004 British Superbikes Championship,
to promote the message 'Save racing for the track'. The sponsorship
allows the Department to communicate safety messages to both attendees
at the races and the television audience. We have used endorsements by
Superbikes riders in our press advertising and PR activity.
DSA has consulted on arrangements for delivery of a revised practical
motorcycle test including higher European driving test standards. The
results of the consultation were published in March 2004. New standards
are to be implemented by 2008. DSA to establish new test centres.
Two High Court decisions in 2000 and 2002 confirmed that a motorised
scooter which is similar to a child's scooter, but propelled by either
an internal combustion engine or an electric motor, is a motor vehicle
within the meaning of Section 185 of the Road Traffic Act. To be used on
the road, the vehicle would need to comply with construction
regulations, be taxed and insured and would be subject to MOT
requirements. The rider would need to hold a driving licence and wear a
To be registered for use on the road, a vehicle would need a certificate
of conformity to show that it meets has European Whole Vehicle Type
Approval or a Minister's Approval Certificate to show that it has passed
a Single Vehicle Approval inspection.
ADVISORY GROUP ON MOTORCYCLING
On 6 May 1999 the Government established an Advisory Group on
Motorcycling. The Group brought together government, representatives of
the industry and those interested in the effects of motorcycling to
discuss a range of issues which will assist the Department in developing
well informed policies. Amongst other things the AGM considered safety,
research, vehicle security, integration and traffic management,
statistics, and environment and fiscal issues. The Advisory Group on
Motorcycling: Final Report to Government was published in August 2004.
Copies are available from DFT at P.O. Box 236, Wetherby, West Yorkshire,
LS23 7NB (Tel: 08701226 236; Fax: 0870 1226 237; e-mail: email@example.com).
The Report is also available on the DfT website at http://www.dft.gov.uk/stellent/groups/dft_rdsafety/documents/page/dft_rdsafety_030137.pdf
Ministers are considering the Report's recommendations in the context of
developing a motorcycling strategy.
The Department has begun a new programme of work to take forward
European research on motorcycle safety helmets, focusing on test
methods, new technologies and how best to bring about the manufacture
and use of better helmets and visors.
The main objective is to deliver the potential safety benefits
identified in European research, which included a 20% reduction in
motorcycle fatalities. In the UK, this has become a national road safety
target with the hope that a new helmet standard could be agreed by the
end of 2005.
MOTORCYCLISTS' DARK VISORS
In 2002, following the publication of research on motorcyclists vision,
the Department consulted on possible changes to the permitted level of
tint in visors. Many responses were received from individual
motorcyclists who favoured dark tints saying that they are the best way
to reduce glare, whilst road safety organisations expressed concerns
about risks to the safety of other vulnerable road users such as
All the views and contributions from those who responded to the
consultation were carefully considered. Essentially there were two
disparate views, one for and one against dark visors, but in the end a
decision was taken to retain the current level of tint for visors at
It is hoped that technological solutions may provide the best way
forward, and standards bodies have been urged to encourage their
development so that in the longer term visor designs lend themselves
equally to both day and night time use.
Although the Department has begun new research, this will not include
dark visors. The purpose of the work is to bring forward the manufacture
and use of better helmets to help minimise motorcycle fatalities. Having
said that, the research is due to include standardisation work on light
reactive materials and an evaluation of any promising visor
MOTORCYCLE HELMETS - BMWC1
The BMWC1 is a motorcycle produced by BMW which they claim does not
require the wearing of a helmet. It is a motorcycle in the sense of two
wheels and controls. But has certain features similar to a car. It has a
seatbelt, and it has a roof. The rider is effectively within a cage. A
number of European countries have allowed a derogation from helmet
wearing. We and Sweden, the two countries with the best road safety
records, have not. VSE were not satisfied that the testing undertaken by
BMW justified the claims and were in a dialogue with BMW about further
testing. However, BMW withdrew from that dialogue and we understand are
to cease production of the model. But there are other similar vehicles
coming onto the market.
Certain BMWC1 owners have been riding without helmets. Bedfordshire
police lost a case heard at a Magistrates court. The case hinged upon
interpretation of the Motor Cycle (Protective Helmets) Regulations 1998.
Regulation 4 applies the compulsory wearing of helmets when driving or
riding "on" a motor bicycle. The challenge, which was upheld
by the magistrates, is that the rider is "in" the vehicle, and
so does not require a helmet. However this ruling has since been
overturned following a CPS appeal. The position remains,
therefore, that riders of these vehicles must wear safety helmets.
The DfT is currently working with the National Cycling Strategy Board
for England to develop a comprehensive promotion of cycling to school.
This necessarily involves a close look at current cycle training
provision; developing a national standard for child cycle training with
road safety organisations, cycle trainers and cycling organisations.
Funding will come through a new cycle industry initiative by the Bicycle
Association and the Association of Cycle Traders called Bike Hub and
government funds. Through a voluntary levy of 0.1% of sales it is
expected that around £350K can be raised in a full year. The money will
support 3 initiatives, a pilot project to encourage cycling to school
aimed at primary schools, support for Bike Week in 2004 and a web portal
for all cycling websites.
A pilot scheme for 40 schools began in spring 2004 and will provide the
schools involved with the full range of facilities and training to make
it easy for children to cycle to school. This will include professional
training, secure cycle parking and safe routes to school. The project
aims to involve between 500-800 schools in 2005. The intention is that
children will learn to ride bikes properly and safely so that increases
in cycling levels can be achieved and sustained in the future.
THE PEDAL CYCLE (SAFETY) REGULATIONS 2003
Regulations which require a bell to be fitted on all new adult pedal
cycles at the point of sale came into force on 1 May 2004. The
Regulations also introduced a requirement for the brakes to be correctly
adjusted and requirements relating to the sale of cycles in kit form.
ROAD SAFETY DEMONSTRATION PROJECTS
The DfT is running a series of road safety demonstration projects to
develop and test, in partnership with selected local authorities,
practical solutions to dealing with road safety problems in busy urban
The Gloucester Safer City project began in April 1996 and ran for five
years until March 2001. Its objective was to reduce casualties in the
City by at least one third by April 2002 (compared with the baseline
average for 1991 - 95). Funding of £5m was made available over the five
year period. A road hierarchy was developed and a range of traffic
calming techniques were used to manage traffic on to appropriate routes,
complemented by education, training and publicity activity. The lessons
from Gloucester Safer City have been assembled in revised Guidelines for
Urban Safety Management which was published in September 2003.
In May 2001 local highway authorities in England were invited to bid for
inclusion in a demonstration project for Mixed Priority Routes. These
roads often carry high volumes of traffic but, also support high levels
of pedestrian activity. In addition to the casualty problems arising
from these circumstances, these areas often create poor quality
environments where communities are severed and pedestrians and cyclists
feel threatened by the dominance of traffic. The intention of the
project is to develop and test the effectiveness of practical solutions
in partnership with local highway authorities, and to develop a good
practice guide which will be made available to all local authorities.
DfT funding of up to £1m per scheme will be made available to cover
development and construction of the schemes. The first five schemes are
in Lambeth, Norwich, Manchester, Leamington Spa, and Crewe. The schemes
in Manchester, Norwich and Crewe are complete. Leamington and Lambeth
have been delayed by a combination of difficulties in negotiating the
details of the schemes with local stakeholders and fitting in to other
activity in the area. Before and after monitoring will be carried out as
part of the evaluation of the schemes. A further five schemes, in Hull,
Liverpool, Oxford, St Albans and Southwark, were announced in December
2002 and these projects are now well in hand, with construction due to
start in Hull later this Autumn (2004).
In July 2002 DfT launched an Inner City Safety Demonstration Project to
show how an integrated, partnership approach to the management of
deprived inner city areas can reduce casualties and improve the quality
of life for local people. In June 2003, it was announced that Birmingham
City Council had been awarded the project. Grant funding of the order of
£6 million will be made available over the six year life of the
project. The project will build upon the experiences from Gloucester
Safer City, but will go further, building partnerships for delivery from
a range of local authority services such as education, health, and
social care. Effective community involvement will also be key in the
development and delivery of the strategy. Lessons learnt from the
project will form the basis of good practice guidance.
ROAD SAFETY GRANT CHALLENGE FUND
In February 2002 the Government announced that it had decided to
allocate around £200,000 per annum to a Road Safety Grant Challenge
Fund to assist with the cost of projects promoting road safety proposed
by organisations other than local authorities. Grant funding is expected
to support the Government's road safety strategy and casualty reduction
targets for 2010. Individual grants are expected to be for sums up to £20,000.
Details of the scheme can be found on the DfT website at http://www.dft.gov.uk/roadsafety/grants
Last year's scheme provided some £216,000 for 17 projects which aim to
improve road safety in Great Britain. A Press Notice announcing the
results of the scheme and giving details of the successful projects was
issued on 3 March 2004.
ROAD CASUALTY STATISTICS
'Road Casualties Great Britain Main Results:2003' was published in June.
'Road Casualties Great Britain 2003: Annual Report' which is a
compendium of statistics and expands on the initial road accident
headline figures will be published on September 30th. The Department has
published tables giving road accident statistics for local authorities
and Government Office Regions on its web site and these will be updated
to give results for 2003 as resources permit.
THINK! Campaign Update - September 2004
The THINK! road safety campaign was launched in 2000 to add coherence to
a wide range of individual road safety messages; provide a vehicle for
third parties to take on messages, raise awareness of how everyone can
contribute to making our roads safer and contribute towards the road
safety strategy and targets. The campaign uses a mix of communications
channels including hardhitting advertising, public relations, leaflets
and posters and work with schools, the police, road safety officers, as
well as voluntary and private sector organisations. Many third parties
have come on board to help us to promote road safety messages. Details
of the THINK! campaign are on the THINK! website at http://www.thinkroadsafety.gov.uk/
Activity in 2003/4
The THINK! road safety campaign aims to encourage and reinforce
attitudes that lead to safer and more considerate behaviour by all road
users, by highlighting a range of key road safety messages. In 2003/4
the main priority areas for high profile publicity are: drink driving,
speeding, seatbelts, including child restraints, motorcycling, child and
teen road safety, driver tiredness, drug driving, mobile phones and
work-related road safety. These campaign areas have been chosen because
they account for the majority of road casualties and because it is
thought they will benefit most from national publicity. Advertising runs
more or less continuously and the Department continues to make available
support materials and briefing to road safety officers, police forces
and others running regional and local activities. Many companies in the
private sector are involved in promoting THINK! road safety messages and
we shall continue to encourage further activity.
Child road safety
A new TV advert featuring the popular hedgehog characters was launched
in August 2003 to remind children that even familiar roads can be
dangerous. Advice for parents and teachers is available, including
Getting across road safety, available since the beginning of 2003. The
leaflets are also available in dual language versions including Punjabi,
Urdu, Bengali and Gujerati.
Free school lesson plans and teaching materials tying in with the
national curriculum for primary and secondary key stages and reflecting
road safety topics are available on http://www.databases.dft.gov.uk/lessonplans.
Teenage pedestrian road safety
11-16 year olds are at greater risk than any other age group.
Advertising aimed at getting them to recognise and pay more attention to
this risk is running in cinemas and on TV during films and programmes
targeting teens. Radio advertising demonstrating the inability to hear
traffic when distracted by a personal stereo or mobile phone is also
running during weekly chart run downs on commercial stations. We plan to
undertake research with teenagers to develop ideas and messages for
Teenage cycle safety
The Department launched a cycle safety campaign for teenagers in May
2003. The campaign encourages teenagers to wear cycle helmets. The
campaign consists of a new poster and postcards and a new teenage
website. We have also developed a new TV filler film as part of the
A radio filler aimed at making drivers more aware of horse riders was
released by the COI in December 2001. A TV filler and a revised leaflet
was launched at Badminton Horse Trials in May 2002.
We are developing a new campaign to tackle both driving over the speed
limit and driving too fast for the conditions. The campaign will involve
high profile TV and radio advertising, PR activity and publicity
materials, which will be made available to stakeholders to help
communicate key messages.
The Department launched its fatigue advertising in August 2000,
following research from Loughborough Sleep Research Unit which indicated
that perhaps as many as 300 deaths a year might result from drivers
falling asleep at the wheel. Regular radio advertising has helped to
raise the profile of this message at times when motorists are most
likely to be driving tired. Truckback advertising has also been used to
reinforce the message throughout the country. We have recently appointed
a brand partnership agency to help encourage private sector companies to
promote our road safety messages about the dangers of driving when
''Now you see him now you don't'' TV advertising ran for the May and
August bank holiday period, a time when motorbikes are traditionally on
the road in greater numbers.
Sponsorship of the British Superbikes Championship started March 14 and
will continue until 19 September. Advertising ran in the motorcycle
press throughout July and August. The leaflets and posters aimed at
riders of high powered bikes have been revised.
A new Drink Drive campaign was launched in June 2004 to undermine
people's confidence about their own 'rule of thumb' about what's safe to
drink and drive, get them to think about the consequences of being
caught and to increase the social stigma surrounding drinking and
driving. The second burst of the campaign, which incorporates an
advertisement for TV and cinema, a radio advertisement and a new poster
and leaflet is planned around the Christmas period.
A new seatbelts campaign was launched in September last year to
encourage people to wear a seatbelt whether they are in the front or the
rear of the car. Although according to the latest research seatbelt
wearing rates are now at their highest ever levels, we cannot afford to
be complacent. We will continue to run TV advertising and regular
reminders on the radio to try to increase wearing rates still further,
particularly by targeting groups with low wearing rates.
Mobile phones and driving
We will continue to run radio and cinema advertising to encourage
motorists to 'Switch off before they drive off', with the aim of getting
people into the habit of switching off their mobile phones before they
get into their vehicles. A burst of advertising and PR activity is
planned at the end of November / beginning of December 2004 to mark the
first anniversary of the mobile phones legislation coming into force,
highlighting the potential fatal consequences of using a handheld mobile
phone while driving.
Drugs and driving
The Department launched a website, http://www.drugdrive.com
last year to inform motorists about the effects of drugs on driving.
This continues to be promoted through targeted advertising on websites
and at music festivals during the summer.
Police and road safety officer involvement
Support for road safety messages locally and well-publicised police
enforcement campaigns have been a key factor in getting the road safety
messages across in the community and on the road. See the THINK!
magazine and the THINK! website for examples. The Publicity team
contributes to a quarterly newsletter to help keep police officers
informed of campaign planning and provides regular updates for the
LARSOA website to keep road safety officers updated on campaign
Child car seats
Advertising in women's and parenting magazines, panels in motorway
service stations and shopping centres and PR activity is being used to
encourage parents to have child restraints properly fitted for children
up to 11. The THINK! campaign is working closely with third parties,
including child restraint manufacturers and media organisations to help
promote the up to 11 and importance of having child restraints properly
fitted messages to parents.
Think! involvement in sport
The Department is continuing its association with the Football league,
which offers opportunities for RSOs to conduct local publicity and to
use team members in local road safety promotions. The department also
sponsors the British Superbikes Championships (see above).
A provisional campaign calendar giving current and future advertising
plans is available on the THINK! campaign website at http://www.thinkroadsafety.gov.uk.