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How to Stay Safe this Road Safety Week
This entry was posted on 21/11/2016.
Every day, 5 people die on UK roads and 60 are seriously injured. This includes drivers, cyclists and pedestrians – we’re all responsible for making our roads safer. As part of Road Safety Week 2016 we’ve got some handy tips on road safety for kids and adults, whether you’re in a car, on a bike or on foot.
Drive safe with these 6 car safety rules and driving tips
We all know the rule that ‘limits are limits, not targets’, but how many of us actually follow that advice? It is so important to stay below the speed limit for your safety and everyone else’s – travelling at 20mph means you can stop in time to avoid a child from three car lengths away, but if you were travelling at 25mph you would hit that child with the same impact as if it had fallen from a second storey window. Hit someone at 30mph and they have a 1 in 5 chance of dying. Pretty sobering statistics when a fifth of us admit to intentionally speeding!
Speaking of sobering, the second rule is to avoid drinking and drugs when you’re driving. The advice now is not to drink at all if you’re driving – you’re three times more likely to have a deadly crash even at half the legal limit! For every 4 deaths where the driver is over the limit there’s one where the driver was technically under it. It’s still legal for you to have a glass of wine or a bottle of beer with dinner, but try to stay aware of how it makes you feel and get someone else to drive if you can.
Have you checked your tyre pressure recently? Under-inflated tyres are the most common car defect to cause fatal accidents. You should be checking your pressure at least once a month; it can be easy to forget to do this, so why not invest in a Genius Ideas 12V Mini Air Compressor? It means you can check and re-inflate them as soon as the thought occurs to you, instead of putting it off and forgetting. By regularly checking your tyres, lights and using high quality wiper blades like the Genius Ideas Silicone Wiper Blades, you can keep yourself and others safe on the road.
We’re all obsessed with our smart phones, and that’s ok – they make it easier to organise your life and stay in touch with your family and friends. But you don’t need to be constantly available! Talking on the phone increases your risk of crashing by four times, whether it’s hands-free or not. Texting makes you 23 times more likely to crash. There’s just no excuse for taking that kind of risk – Facebook can wait!
It can be tricky to avoid driving while tired, but feeling tired will seriously affect your awareness of what’s going on around you. Do your best to get enough rest before driving; you can also kit out your car with extra mirrors to make sure you always see cyclists and pedestrians. The Ideaworks Blind Spot Mirror lets you see behind you from every angle. Or if you often find yourself distracted by passenger, try the Genius Ideas Double Wide-Angle Rear View Mirror to keep an eye on your kids without taking your eyes off the road.
We’ve talked about how we take care of the environment before; taking steps like recycling. But what about all those commuter miles? As part of Movember, some of our staff have been cycling or walking to work instead of driving – take a look at our blog on it! This isn’t just better for their health, they’re preventing a lot of unnecessary pollution! We’re lucky to have plenty of safe pavements and cycle paths around our office; if you’re considering ditching your car more often, read on for some great walking, running and bike safety tips.
Road safety for cyclists, runners and dog walkers
Using a bike instead of driving is a great step to take to improve your health; it can be daunting to start cycling on roads but there are a few simple rules that will keep you safe. Make sure you’ve got lights and reflective clothing if you’re cycling after dark! Ride decisively and always make eye contact with drivers before you make a manoeuvre. Your local council may run safety training schemes; it’s well worth getting a place on one of these to give yourself extra confidence.
Running at night
If you’re a dedicated runner then when the winter comes around you’ll often find yourself going for a night run. Make sure you wear some reflective running gear; try the Ideaworks LED Walking Shoe Light for higher visibility even when you’re not caught in the headlights. Try to pick a route that’s only on pavements, and run against the direction of traffic so that you can move quickly if you need to. It can be hard to keep up that PB pace without some music pushing you on, but we recommend keeping it at a low volume so you can stay aware of what’s happening around you.
Keeping dogs safe
Many of us get most of our outdoor exercise in the company of man’s best friend. If you’re a dog walker it’s important to keep both you and your pooch safe on the road. Consider getting your dog a cute little reflective jacket so that it can be seen easily during walkies. The Pet Parade LED Retractable Dog Lead with Light is an easy way to increase your visibility while also making sure that your dog stays within a safe distance of you.