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A recent survey has found that around a quarter of male drivers risk catastrophic head-on crashes by overtaking blind, while more than four in ten (44%) admit speeding at 60mph+ on rural roads. Men are much more likely to take these deadly risks than women, and more than twice as likely to have been involved in an overtaking near-miss or incident....
The Association of British Insurers (ABI) has welcomed the announcement from the Government that they are to publish a Green Paper on young driver safety. The ABI has long campaigned to change the way young people learn how to drive in order to reduce death and injury on the roads and make young drivers safer....
To coincide with Road Safety Week, the Association of British Insurers (ABI) has published new research showing overwhelming public backing for radical new proposals to help stop young people dying or being seriously injured on our roads....
Lighter nights all year round could help to arrest the rising number of road deaths, according to the Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents (RoSPA)....
Urgent action is needed to improve the safety of young drivers, according to the Association of British Insurers (ABI). The industry group says that radical measures are necessary – including a minimum one year learning period....
An independent survey, commissioned by the not-for-profit Association of Personal Injury Lawyers (APIL), has found that almost 40% of people who have suffered a whiplash injury have never claimed compensation for it....
A recent study has exposed the distraction and danger to drivers of just having a mobile phone in the car, with a fifth of participants in a simulator situation moving their eyes from the road for more than seven seconds after simply hearing their phone ring.
The simulator study commissioned by esure car insurance reveals that motorists take 23% longer to respond to an unexpected occurrence on the road when trying to send a text message while driving – which equates to the vehicle moving 8.5metres ‘blind’ while driving at 70mph. This lag in reaction times proved larger than the increased reaction times of distractions of arguing children in the backseat (13%) or feeling stressed (4%).
The simulator study further revealed that posting a short status update on, for example facebook - an everyday temptation to those with a smartphone - had various effects in driver performance mainly causing motorists to move across their lane to a greater extent (up to one metre more than in controlled conditions), being less consistent in following distance and driving closer to the vehicle ahead.
These decreases in motoring performance occurred despite drivers slowing down – proving that a reduction in speed does not offset the true dangers of being on a smartphone and the dangers of updating a social networking status.
The Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents (RoSPA) in Scotland has welcomed a reduction in the number of people killed or seriously injured at safety camera sites following camera enforcement, but is concerned that some drivers are still not heeding the safety messages at 40-, 50- and 60mph locations....
The European Commission has launched a public consultation to help victims of cross-border traffic accidents, who may currently face difficulties because of varying time limits for claiming compensation for damage in case of an accident abroad in the EU. The consultation will run until 19th November.
Vice-President Viviane Reding, the EU's Justice Commissioner said: "There are around one million road traffic accidents in the EU every year and some of these inevitably involve visitors from other EU countries. A road accident is a stressful experience for anyone, but it can get even worse if the victim is denied compensation due to complicated rules on bringing a claim.
“The European Commission wants to find out more so that we can offer effective solutions and make sure all victims have proper access to justice. European Citizens should feel at ease when using their car to go on holiday in another EU country."
Currently, different national rules lead to a confusing situation for victims, who may miss the sometimes short deadlines and end up receiving no compensation at all. The aim of the consultation is to get a better idea of the scale of the problem and to assess potential solutions.
Possible solutions that are addressed in the public consultation range from improving information to victims of cross-border road accidents, to harmonising limitation and prescription periods (the time limits for bringing legal action for damages following an accident).
The consultation is aimed at road traffic accident victims, all those who travel abroad with their car, legal practitioners, insurers and any other interested individual or organisation.
MEPs have approved new European rules to ensure that, by 2015, all new cars must be fitted with eCall devices to alert the rescue services to road crashes automatically....
Brake, the road safety charity, has welcomed the announcement by Justice Secretary Kenny MacAskill that proposals to lower the limit from 80mg of alcohol per 100ml of blood to 50mg will be brought forward later this year....
The latest RAC Report on Motoring has found that the number of 17-24-year-olds drug-driving has doubled from 5% to 9% in the past twelve months, and 13% of this age group have driven or been a passenger in a car when the driver was under the influence of drugs over the past year....
As the clocks go forward Autoglass® and the road safety charity Brake are renewing calls for government to make it ‘Lighter Later’ by putting the clocks forward by an hour year-round.
This would mean fewer daylight hours ‘wasted’ in the early mornings when most people are asleep. The lighter evenings would mean reduced danger to pedestrians and cyclists in the dark afternoons and evenings through the winter months.
It’s estimated this would result in 80 fewer deaths and hundreds fewer serious injuries each year, preventing unnecessary suffering and saving the NHS £138 million annually.
Matthew Mycock, Autoglass® Managing Director commented:
“Low light means drivers struggle to clearly see objects and hazards, and it places cyclists and pedestrians at high risk.”
“Putting clocks forward an hour all year round, will save millions of pounds in emergency and medical costs and spare thousands of people the pain and anguish which comes from road crashes.”
Road users across Scotland are being urged to raise their awareness of motorcycles, as the approach of spring sees more and more bikers out and about.
A campaign has been organised by the Association of Chief Police Officers in Scotland to make all motorists, pedestrians and motorcyclists themselves more aware of the risks associated with this popular mode of travel and leisure pursuit.
Superintendent Alan Duncan who is the head of Road Policing for Lothian and Borders Police, and the ACPOS lead for National Campaigns said:
“Year -on-year there is still a disproportionate number of motorcycles involved in collisions and unfortunately these often result in serious injury for those involved.
“Motorcyclists and their passengers are more vulnerable to injury than other vehicle users and I would urge all road users to be aware of motorcycles. Just remember that motorcycles can be less visible than other vehicles. Motorcyclists need to appreciate and be aware of changing road conditions at all times, and the fact that their personal skill level may have deteriorated over the winter months.”
Recent research by the Scottish Government has found that over 70% of drivers in Scotland admit to taking risks whilst driving, and just over half confess to speeding.
The Scottish Government has launched a new campaign with Road Safety Scotland (part of Transport Scotland) encouraging drivers to consider how they can reduce their ‘risk factor’ on country roads.
Among the risks Scottish drivers admit to taking are:
The Institute of Advanced Motorists (IAM) is renewing its call on the government to make driving on rural A-roads a mandatory part of the driving test.
IAM research shows that 82% of rural fatal and serious casualties are on single carriageway roads compared with just 18% on motorways and dual carriageway roads.
However the current driving test fails to take this into account. While good instructors understand that experience on a wide variety of roads in different conditions gives young people the best chance of survival, all too many merely educate up to the existing test standard. Knowledge of parking, emergency stops and low speed manoeuvres is important but dealing with high speed corners, bad weather, and overtaking are far more vital skills.
The recent report from the IAM 'The fast and the curious', found that new drivers themselves felt unprepared for real life scenarios and would welcome extra help.
The IAM has written to the road safety minister to outline its views on how it believes the government should tackle deaths and accidents of the highest risk group on our roads, young drivers. This starts with improving the driving test to include training on our most dangerous roads – single-carriageway rural A-roads.
IAM chief executive Simon Best said: “Driver and rider error is a contributory factor in two thirds of accidents. We can only improve our cars and roads so far. The challenge now is to improve the humans that drive them, to continue our outstanding record of road safety.”