The newly convened South West Peninsula Road Safety Partnership undertakes a ‘Day of Action’ on the A38.

February 25th, 2020 by
On the 14th January 2020 a pro-active multi-agency ‘Day of Action’ took place on the A38, designed to enhance the safety of Cornwall’s residents and visitors travelling on the A38 corridor in East Cornwall. The selection of this route targeted one of Highways England’s worst performing routes from Bodmin to Saltash, with the number of people killed or seriously injured on some sections being nearly 3.5 times the national average for those killed or seriously injured. The Operation contained several dimensions in order to target as many users of this network as possible.

Alliance Operations Roads Policing Officers provided a high impact, high profile enforcement initiative focussing on the ‘Fatal Five’ (inappropriate or excessive speed, not wearing a seatbelt, driver distractions including using mobile phones, driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs and careless or inconsiderate driving), working alongside the Alliance Armed Response Team, Local Policing staff, Safety Camera Partnership, Driving and Vehicle Standards Agency (DVSA), Driving and Vehicle Licensing Agency (DVLA) and Road Fuels (HMRC).

Despite the poor weather the team achieved some fantastic results as detailed below:

·        8 drivers dealt with at the roadside for no insurance or MOT

·        2 number plate offences

·        2 lighting offences

·        1 mobile phone offence

·        1 window tint offence

·        1 illegal tyre offence

·        1 vehicle excess weight offence

·        29 excess speed offences (combination of Safety Camera Partnership and officers on patrol)

·        12 vehicles clamped and a further 6 warning notices issued for no tax

·        11 prohibitions and 4 advisory notices issued by DVSA for vehicle defects

By way of comparison, the Safety Camera Partnership had 200 activations the day before the operation and 150 the day after, on the day of action itself only having 27.   It was acknowledged that the weather was likely to be a factor in slowing people down and that drivers were also reacting to the volume of police presence on the road.

The enforcement initiative was supported by a range of educational engagement activities that took place at a local supermarket in Liskeard, which saw resources from a variety of key road safety partners such as, Cornwall Council/Cornwall Fire & Rescue Service, The Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner, Devon & Cornwall Police, Highways England and Safe38 in attendance to promote knowledge of safe and appropriate speeds, Operation Snap, Operation Close Pass and Driving for Better Business, where various liveried vehicles were also on display. This opportunity facilitated proactive discussions with members of the public that proved productive in delivering wider confidence with what we were aiming to achieve.  Some concerns were also alleviated on the day through being able to connect with the right officers to explain and describe in detail, what plans are progressing to tackle road safety. 61 people were engaged in active conversations with the education team about rural road safety, where various road safety advice leaflets were provided for those people to take away. These conversations and engagements concluded with a short knowledge check via survey, which revealed the following results:

·        95% of people were more likely to reduce their speed on rural roads

·        93% of people were more aware of the importance of braking before the bend and not on it (a 1% increase on awareness prior to the engagement)

·        72% of people were aware that the national speed limit on a single carriageway road is 60mph unless indicated otherwise (28% were not aware of this prior to the engagement)

A range of road safety proposals have been submitted to the Secretary of State for Transport to lobby for funding support through the next Roads Investment Strategy 2020-2025.  Education and enforcement provides a key supporting role to encourage road user respect and compliance but investment is essential to address the safety issues along this route. We are looking to Government to make a favourable announcement so that these critical improvements can progress.

Share

Learn 2 Live Initiative Seeks New Speakers

February 12th, 2020 by

Learn 2 Live is a powerful, thought provoking initiative, designed to target young driver and passenger casualties in Cornwall. Since it started in Cornwall six years ago, thousands of young and pre-drivers have attended Learn 2 Live.

Learn 2 Live is based on a short DVD showing a group of friends being involved in a collision and the emergency services arriving. As each agency arrives at the scene, the DVD is paused and a member of that particular emergency service enters the stage to give their chilling account of attending the scene of a road traffic collision.

These accounts are then followed by a volunteer family member who has lost a loved one in a road traffic collision telling their story of the circumstances of their loss and the devastating affect that this has had on their life.

Tamsin Ferris, Road Safety Officer, says: “Through Learn 2 Live, young drivers and passengers witness how a collision occurs, the devastation that follows, and how the lives of all the professionals, and in particular family members, are affected. This highly impactful programme helps young drivers to think about the facts, consequences, and what they can do in order to avoid being involved in a road traffic collision.”

The Learn 2 Live program relies on volunteer speakers who have been involved in attending road traffic collisions, sharing their personal experiences with students; the Prevention, Protection and Road Safety Team are seeking new speakers to ensure the programme’s future. If you are interested in becoming involved in Learn 2 Live, please contact Paula Wellings, Casualty Reduction Manager on 07891 840493 or email pwellings@cornwall.gov.uk.

Share

What will your drink cost this Christmas

December 16th, 2019 by

Who will you spend Christmas with? A Paramedic, a Firefighter or even a Police Officer?

This festive season, as many of us drink more than intended, and we’re urging you to think about how and who you could spend Christmas with.

The Safer Cornwall partnership festive safe drinking campaign “What Will Your Drink Cost?” is asking anyone out enjoying festivities over the coming weeks to drink sensibly while enjoying Cornwall and Christmas.

The campaign not only ask you to think how your evening might end and what the impact could be, but also how to drink sensibly busting some common drinking myths!

Raph is a specialist paramedic who explains why sticking to one type of alcohol doesn’t mean you can drink more.

Other myths include:

  • Having a tactical chunder doesn’t get rid of the effects of alcohol – as the alcohol will already be absorbed into your blood, and you could end up very drunk and needing to go to hopsital
  • Drinking coffee doesn’t sober you up, and it’s not a way to help you drive home. The coffee just masks the effect by making you feel less tired
  • Having a large meal before you go out doesn’t give you the ability to drink more, it just makes the alcohol hang around longer in your system and you could end up drinking too much and getting yourself more drunk
  • If you’ve had more than a couple the night before, you won’t be okay to drive the next morning, as it could take over 12 hours for the alcohol to leave your body and be safe to drive. You could end up losing your licence
  • Taking paracetamol before bed doesn’t help your hangover, it’s really bad for your kidneys and the effect wears off while you’re asleep. You’re better off taking them in the morning when you wake up.

Drinking too much can impact on our already stretched services such as the NHS and Police force. Those services will be more than happy to help if you really need it, but they don’t really want to spend time with you because you’ve had too much to drink.

Drinking more than normal can bring on a false sense of confidence. This can lead to bad choices or decisions, such as drink driving or getting into arguments and fights. In a few cases, this can lead to people ending up in hospital, losing their drivers licence, getting fined, being arrested, or having accidents which put themselves or other people in danger.

The Council and its partners hope everyone enjoys the festive season, go out and have fun but please drink sensibly, and to plan how you’ll get home safely.

We don’t want to be the Christmas Grinch and say that you shouldn’t drink at all, because we know that for most of us that’s not going to happen! What we’re asking is that people go out and have fun in a way that doesn’t impact on others, or potentially affect their own future.

Here’s Jez Bayes, our Alcohol Strategy Lead giving us some top tips to enjoy Cornwall and drink sensibly this festive season:

  • Alternate alcoholic drinks with soft drinks or water
  • Keep an eye on your drink when out, and don’t get to the point where you wouldn’t notice if someone spiked you
  • Plan how you will get home – book a taxi in advance, organise a lift, or have a designated driver in your group
  • Don’t attempt to reason with people who have drunk too much

 

 

Share

Cornwall Council recently launched their Casualty Reduction Strategy

November 1st, 2019 by

Cornwall Council recently launched their Casualty Reduction Strategy, which was previously published in 2013.  Our priority remains to reduce the number of people killed and seriously injured (KSIs) on our roads and action is required now to reverse the negative trend of rising KSIs, particularly with those seriously injured.

Our vision is to eradicate deaths and serious injuries from our roads, supporting an accessible, healthier and safer Cornwall.  We have adopted the ‘Safe System’ approach, which advocates a multi-disciplinary and multi-sectoral approach to address the road safety needs of all users, using the five pillar framework approach of Safer Speeds, Safer Road Users, Safer Vehicles, Safer Roads and Mobility and Post Crash Response.  Underpinning this is Cornwall Council’s collaborative principles to:

  • work together as one team
  • connect with our partners
  • connect with our communities and;
  • tackle KSI’s with evidence led data

 

Road safety is a matter of national importance, affecting both those who drive and those who don’t drive.  September 26th was a day of reflection and a pledge by Project EDWARD to encourage a European Day Without a Road Death.  This annual event promotes initiatives to encourage all road users to reflect on their behaviour and attitude, as they recognise driver behaviour is one of the key barriers to progress.  During the week commencing 18th November 2019, the charity Brake are running a Road Safety week which we will see activity focussed on safe and healthy journeys, encouraging everyone to step up and play their part in the celebration of safe system solutions and the creation of a safe and healthy future.

As part of the Road Safety Week, Brake is encouraging everyone to ‘Make the Brake Pledge’.  The Pledge calls for people to do everything they can to protect themselves and the people around them.  For more information on how to pledge see the following link:

http://www.brake.org.uk/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&layout=edit&id=129

Casualty Reduction Strategy is available here: https://www.cornwall.gov.uk/media/41393044/road-casualty-reduction-strategy-2019-web.pdf

 

Share

Council employees informed of how to be a safer driver.

June 2nd, 2019 by

On Monday 20th May at NCH an employee engagement event was held focusing on being a safer driver.

Staff were invited to come to speak to Cornwall Fire & Rescue and Cornwall Council staff regarding their safety on the road with the emphasis on being a safer driver ensuring you are fit to drive, you adopt safer driving behaviour as a driver and ensure your vehicle is road safe.

Messages included, in car distractions such mobile phones, vehicle checks, alcohol and being fit to drive. Information and advice was provided to increase drivers’ awareness, encouraging them to adopt or maintain safe driving behaviour, and make a positive change.

Guy Pomeroy from Falmouth Fire Station, supported by Green Watch from Truro, delivered mobile phone safety information to Council employees. Staff who engaged were given a signal blocker asked to complete a form to evaluate the use of the signal blocker.  The Health, Safety & Wellbeing team attended and offered bloody pressure tests, eye sight tests and checks and tailored health advice as we are aware of the increase of RTC’s being reported as medical episodes at the wheel.  Staff from the Prevention and Road Safety Team attended to deliver road safety messages to attendees.

Share

Partnership cyclist safety event in Falmouth

June 1st, 2019 by

On Tuesday the 9th April 2019, Blue Watch at Falmouth Community Fire Station in partnership with Devon & Cornwall Police delivered a cycle safety awareness event at The Moor in Falmouth which coincided with the Farmers Market and the Easter holidays to engage with drivers and cyclists to raise awareness of cyclist safety, focusing on the correct passing distances for vehicles overtaking cyclists.

Operation Close Pass was originally launched by West Midlands Police in 2016, and was designed to proactively identify and educate drivers who pass too closely to cyclists. In partnership with Devon & Cornwall Police the Watch engaged with 70 people.

Share

Students receive important road safety messages

February 8th, 2019 by

Cornwall College students based at the Saltash campus recieved a reactive road safety workshop. Cornwall Fire, Rescue and Community Safety Service Prevention and Road Safety team attended the college to deliver messages around the dangers of peer pressure; the difficulties of multi-tasking – distractions in their vehicles such as mobile phones and music streaming; appropriate small changes they could make to their driving to increase their safety and reduce the likelihood of being involved in a collision.

The workshops were requested by a member of staff at the College due to some incidents which had occurred where students were involved in near misses and some collisions in a bid to make students more aware of the appropriate driving behaviours which are required to reduce the risk of them being involved in a collision.

Share

Winter driving messages delivered during recent cold snap!

February 8th, 2019 by

Winter driving messages delivered during recent cold snap!

Whole time watches across Cornwall have been delivering vital winter driving messages to drivers regarding the importance of carrying out winter safety checks and making appropriate changes to their driving in wintery, snowy or icy conditions. Watches who supported this campaign include Blue Watch from Tolvaddon, Orange Watch from Truro and Green and Orange Watch from Bodmin.

Watches were asked to attend supermarkets or businesses local to them to deliver this campaign; alternatively they had the option to attend any other local events/areas where there is a good footfall of drivers to communicate with.

Key messages delivered to drivers included:

Frozen doors:

  • A squirt of WD40 will prevent your door locks from freezing up.

Tyres:

  • Check tyres are inflated correctly. Aim for at least 2mm of tread in winter to handle the additional mud and rain.

Screenwash/oil:

  • When was the last time you checked your fluid levels? Top up and use an additive in your screenwash. Low or no oil is the quickest way to a vehicle breakdown.

Windscreens:

  • Don’t use your wipers to clear ice! They are designed for nothing tougher than water!
  • But do make sure you clear all windows before taking off.

Driving advice:

  • Slow down and increase the distance between you and other vehicles. Stopping distances double in wet conditions and in icy conditions can increase up to ten times.
  • Put your lights on. You want other drivers to see you, use your headlights not side lights to ensure other drivers can see you.
  • Avoid driving if at all possible in icy or snowy conditions. Can you work from home? Delay your journey?

Initial evaluations results who that these events were very effective in raising drivers awareness og the importance of preparing their vehicle for winter and increased the likelihood that they would do so.

Share

Fire and road safety annual evidence report now available

April 10th, 2018 by

Our new Risk Based Evidence Profile 2018 is now available. It highlights our two highest risk priorities for prevention activities which are: accidental dwelling fires and road traffic collisions.

The document includes the latest research and analysis about fires and road safety, such as, new evidence from the Home Office shows that while the number of fires has fallen nationally the number of people aged 65 and over killed in a fire has risen by 22% between 2014/15 and 2016/17.

To read the full report or find out more fire and road safety facts about Cornwall please visit www.cornwall.gov.uk/rbep  A key messages paper is also available on the website which summarises these findings.

Did you know?

Facts about road safety

  • On average there are 24 collisions on roads in Cornwall each week involving an injury.
  • Evidence shows that most of the factors contributing to collisions in Cornwall are related to driver error.
  • The five high risk driving behaviours in Cornwall are:
  1. Failing to look properly
  2. Failed to judge other person’s speed or path
  3. Speeding
  4. Careless/ reckless/in a hurry
  5. Loss of control
  • Motorcycles make up less than 1% of traffic, but are involved in more than 15% of injury collisions.
Share

St Austell Green Watch Cycling Awareness event

March 30th, 2018 by

Pedal cyclists have been identified as a priority road user group both nationally and in Cornwall due to an increase in numbers of people cycling on the roads and the fact that they are vulnerable to injury: like motorcyclists and pedestrians, if they involved in a collision the chances of being injured is much higher than those in enclosed vehicles.

On Saturday the 24th February, Green Watch at St Austell Community Fire Station held a cycling awareness event at Halfords in St Austell to engage with drivers and cyclists to raise awareness of cyclist safety, focusing on the correct passing distances for vehicles overtaking cyclists.  Cyclists should be positioned 0.75metres from the kerb in order for them to avoid pot holes and drain covers, mud, puddles and being injured if a car door opened in front of them. For vehicles passing the cyclists they should allow at least 1.5m of space just in case the cyclists swerve out into the road to avoid a hazard or is blown by the wind unexpectedly.

Drivers were encouraged to look out for cyclists when driving on the road and give them plenty of space when overtaking,  cyclists were informed to ride defensively and be more visible on the road.  Visibility was a key topic where the Watch tested everyone’s understanding of the potentially short distances of seeing cyclists at night with no lights. Driving at 30mph at night a driver should expect to see a cyclist with dark clothing on when they were just 2 metres away which is a split second reaction time. With a cyclist in a white jacket this extends to only 30metres and a few seconds. But with a Hi-Viz jacket on this jumps to 100metres, making a dramatic improvement on being visible on the road.

All drivers spoken to agreed that the event had been informative and had certainly made them think about both looking out for cyclists more at night giving them at least 1.5 metres when passing them. Cyclists also agreed to consider their visibility more and ride more positively helping them improve their safety reducing the chances of having an incident.

All the motorist participants agreed that the short questionnaire had been informative and had certainly made them think about both looking out for cyclists more at night and would give them at least 1.5 metres when passing them. Cyclists also agreed that they needed to consider their visibility more and would ride more positively helping them improve their stability reducing the chances of having an incident.

Green Watch considered the initiative a great success and felt that all of the participants benefited from the information given by them. They would like to thank Halfords and the media for their support and the Prevention and Road Safety team for their valued assistance

Share
Safer Cornwall are a working partnership involving: