A roads charity is urging drivers to take action during its flagship safety week, and start taking more care behind the wheel.
To mark the start of Road Safety Week, Brake emphasises the point that our roads would be far safer if drivers tried to be more considerate. The plea comes as its new survey reveals 41% of children say they have been hit, or nearly hit, by a vehicle while on foot or bike.
According to the figures, two-thirds of the 4,787 children aged seven-to-11 said the roads in their community could be dangerous for walking and cycling.
Brake also worked with Specsavers and RSA to produce a report which showed that speeding fines for careless driving are being issued at a rate of almost two every minute in the UK.
In total 950,505 fixed-penalty notices were issued for speeding in 2013, with 17,483 tickets handed out for careless driving. Every day there are five deaths and 61 serious injuries in the UK as a result of road traffic accidents.
Brake deputy chief executive Julie Townsend said one of the biggest problems on the roads is drivers not thinking about the safety of others as well as themselves.
Mrs Townsend said that streets and roads could be made less “stressful, risky places” if motorists look out for each other, especially children and the elderly or disabled. She urged people to stick to 20mph or below in towns and villages and take time to carefully look out for other road users at junctions.
Road safety minister Robert Goodwill echoed Mrs Townsend’s sentiment. He said that despite Britain having some of the “safest roads” in the UK, the Government is still looking for ways in which they can be improved and reduce the number of car crashes.
He said it is important that people are able to cycle, walk and run, near or alongside roads without being put in danger from motorists.
Chief Constable Suzette Davenport, the Association of Chief Police Officers’ head of roads policing, described Road Safety week as “a great opportunity for forces and partners to engage with their local communities”.
A recent study by AA and Populus showed almost three-quarters (73%) thought drivers were in a hurry and not considerate enough.
Meanwhile, the majority (94%) of the 16,606 people in the survey said drivers should be more courteous to each other.