If you GO in the dark, make sure you GLOW – that’s the message to cyclists on Merseyside as part of a new campaign aimed at keeping them safe and seen on the region’s roads this winter.
The initiative, launched by Merseyside Road Safety Partnership’s cycling lead Sefton Council and supported by the region’s Police Commissioner Jane Kennedy, Merseyside Police and Merseyside Fire and Rescue Service, Merseytravel and other Local Authorities, aims to encourage cyclists to make sure they are highly visible now the clocks have gone back and the darker winter months have arrived by wearing bright, reflective clothing.
The campaign, which is being featured on buses travelling across the region and promoted through social media, also urges drivers to take extra care when looking out for cyclists, who may be harder to spot in bad weather and reduced visibility.
It is the latest initiative launched by the Road Safety Partnership to improve cycle safety in the region and follows on from the introduction of Operation Safe Pass which educates drivers about the minimum space needed when overtaking cyclists. Both schemes are part of the partnership’s action plan for cyclists included within the Liverpool City Region Road Safety Strategy which was launched by the Commissioner and Metro Mayor, Steve Rotheram, in 2017 with the aim of reducing the number of people killed or seriously injured on the region’s roads.
Jane said: “Cyclists are particularly vulnerable and that is why more needs to be done to protect them and ensure other road users are aware of them and considerate of their needs. The number of cyclists harmed on our roads has been gradually increasing for more than a decade and we know that by far the biggest cause for collisions involving bikes is a failure by drivers and cyclists to look properly.
“This campaign aims to highlight this issue and encourages cyclists to take extra precautions to keep themselves safe, while also urging drivers to look, and look again, to make sure they don’t miss somebody on a bike.
“We all have a responsibility to be aware of those around us when we are using the roads. These are really simple steps which could make a huge difference – and ultimately save a life.”
Chair of Merseyside’s Road Safety Partnership Sue McTaggart said: “Every death or serious injury on our roads is one too many and sadly many of them are preventable. This campaign is designed to encourage all road users to take a little bit of extra care. For cyclists and motorcyclists that means making sure you can be seen when you set out on the roads, for drivers it is taking that second and third look for a bike or motorcyclist and potentially preventing a collision.
“We recognise that many road users are vulnerable and this campaign is part of our wider strategy to use education, engineering and enforcement to help protect those people who are at most risk on our roads.”
Find out more about the Merseyside Road Safety Partnership here.