Fleet News

Fleets urged to help tackle pedestrian and cyclist casualties

Brake is calling for employers to play their part in preventing pedestrians and cyclist casualties after research found 54% of companies don't provide driver education on protecting pedestrians and cyclists.

Newly-released Government figures show six people are killed and 157 seriously injured every week while walking or cycling. At least 24% of road deaths and serious injuries involve a vehicle being driven for work.

The Brake and Licence Bureau research also found:

  • Two-thirds (68%) don't instruct drivers to slow down to 20mph around schools, homes and shops.
  • Six in 10 (61%) don't instruct drivers on looking twice and checking mirrors at junctions for cyclists or motorcyclists.
  • Nine in 10 (89%) don't plan routes to avoid schools and residential areas.
  • Eight in 10 (80%) don't use blind spot sensors and seven in 10 (70%) don't use blind spot cameras on large commercial vehicles;.
  • Almost half (45%) don't use telematics to monitor driver speed, so have no way of knowing if drivers are routinely endangering others by driving too fast.

The survey included 228 companies operating commercial vehicles, company cars or vans, or with employees who drive their own vehicles to business appointments.

Brake advises employers with staff who drive for work to take a range of steps to protect our most vulnerable road users - pedestrians, cyclists and motorcyclists, who account for 59% of UK road deaths and serious injuries,

These steps include thorough journey planning, driver education, making use of technology to minimise blindspots and monitor speed, and building a culture of always putting safety first.

Ellie Pearson, senior professional engagement officer at Brake, said: "Employers have a crucial role to play in preventing people on foot and bicycle needlessly losing their lives or suffering terrible injuries.

"Some are working hard and taking advantage of new technologies to minimise the risks their staff pose when driving on company time.

"And we know that when employers reduce these risks, they reap benefits like reduced costs and enhanced morale and reputation.

"But it is disappointing that many employers are failing to take simple steps to ensure their drivers are doing everything possible to protect pedestrians and cyclists.

"We're appealing to all employers with staff who drive for work to get the right policies in place, make use of technologies to address blindspots and speeding, and ensure their drivers understand that protecting people always comes first."

Les Owen from Licence Bureau said: "Very little work is involved for companies to show an interest in improving road safety and yet so few do anything about it. Companies hold the keys but do not engage in the process. Is it fear of challenging staff about driving?

"Delivering work related road risk messages is key to preventing incidents on the road. There is every reason for companies to make road safety a priority, and incidentally save money over time.

"Start with engaging staff who drive at work but also those who are vulnerable road users. They could all be given safety messages to reduce staff absences through injury or worse. Drive safely."

Brake is also encouraging employers to sign up now to take part in its road safety week, November 17-23, which will focus on the theme ‘look out for each other'.

Companies that register at http://www.roadsafetyweek.org.uk/ get a free pack of resources to help them promote safe driving messages.

  • Next month is safety month for Fleet News, coinciding with Brake’s road safety week. Look out for our two themed issues: November 13 - safety and product and November 27 - safety and people, plus content on our website.


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  • Darren - 15/10/2014 12:13

    I think more education needs to be given to the pedestrians and cyclists. The amount of pedestrians I see crossing the road without taking their eyes off their phones, crossing a busy road 10 yards away from a pedestrian crossing rather than walk the extra 10 yards to the crossing, jumping in and out of moving cars etc Or cyclists going straight though red lights/jumping on and off the pavement without checking the road etc, it's no wonder the casualty figures are so high. And as a car driver, it is automatically your fault when at night you hit the cyclist dressed all in black, with no lights, headphones in who has just crossed the road without looking on a dark unlit road.

  • Danie Wiutt-Morris - 15/10/2014 12:29

    LOL, An article on Cycling and pedestrian's and the first response is to blame cyclists and pedestrians. Classy.

    • Darren - 15/10/2014 13:42

      @Danie Wiut t-Morris - That's fine Danie, I have plenty of video evidence of pedestrians and cyclists doing this, including just last week when a schoolboy walked straight in front of my car while looking at his phone. I just managed to stop for him and he just looked up, half smiled and then carried on walking and looking at his phone like nothing had happened. Perhaps I shall upload them to Youtube for you? What is classy is for you to come in here and insult me as though my view and experience in these matters mean nothing.

    • Daniel - 15/10/2014 15:03

      @Darren - Sadly every cycling related post on Fleet news draws the same "it’s all the cyclists faults", "they should be- banned-licenced-taxed (run over). As a driver, cyclist and frequent pedestrian I have a unique perspective of bad habits on all three user groups, fact is the most incompetent pedestrians and cyclists don't kill car drivers and as fleet managers we should look to training and safety to help as its a hard lesson when a child loses a cyclist parent (who as in 90% of cases was law abiding and safe) to blame the cyclist as usual when some additional training for the driver of the big hunk of metal could have helped rings hollow. I got hit twice by the same van in a bike lane this morning. The van who cut into my bike lane and hit me today got a slight head shake of distain, but in return I got "bumped" again and a rude gesture, so very dangerous and a mate was knocked off last week by a car that pull out on him and simply drove off as if it didn’t matter. Ultimately we are all humans not three different species and I assume you too are a pedestrian who is I hope fully training in pedestrianing (is that a word?), I am certainly a driver and Motorcyclist and have been trained for road use, (not for pedestrianing though, however my road skills give me a healthy respect of roads and on my bike I am very sensible and courteous ( I have three kids who I want to see grow ). I don't disagree texting pedestrians (same as the 2-3 texting driver I capture on my helmet cam a day) are very dangerous, hence the need to better train our drivers for everyone’s sake and in general school kids stepping out is a danger to me more than them or you (happened last week) they never say thanks either which is some manners I am instilling to my kids, but to fully apportion blame instantly on the non-drivers is unhelpful given that you no doubt have input to driving for work safety. So don’t dismiss the power of directed training, make drivers aware of pedestrians and cyclists and when they are on foot they may be better pedestrians and better cyclists, its win win!!. Ultimately cars pose the biggest impact and so are the best place to start and as many no doubt are pedestrian’s and maybe cyclists, to be fair cycling so often has made me a far safer driver, maybe a poll on how many cyclists are bad drivers and vice versa too would be an eye opener? And re the driver training, what a great way to cascade awareness top down????. I don’t think a swap of car /bike related video footage will do anything other than illustrate that everyone needs to be more careful, I have hours of footage recorded in the car and on the bike of cut ups, near misses, texting drivers, newspaper reading drivers, light jumping idiot cyclists, silly kids, and my big hate, car drivers dooring me. Difference is in the car its pain in the butt, on the bike, my three kids could lose their dad. Peace Darren, you are of course welcome to your opinion, I didn’t mean to impugn your classiness, stay safe.

    • Darren - 15/10/2014 16:01

      @Daniel - See now that was a better reply "same as the 2-3 texting driver I capture on my helmet cam a day" This is an absolute pet hate of mine, I have had actual arguments with people doing this. I have also seen people driving up the wrong way of the one way road I live on, changing lanes without checking anyone is there first, honestly some people drive like they are the only ones on the planet. I do walk, I also cycle and I ride a motorbike as well as being a driver, I feel that every car driver should spend a week travelling by one of these other means. I think we would have a lot safer drivers out there. I am currently heading a task force to slow down some of the drivers who race through our little village (20mph limit) because it's a nice little rat run, I am trying to put a team together and get them trained up to use speed detection equipment. Google Community Speed Watch. Just because I drive a car, doesn't mean I am one of the people whom seem to aim at pedestrians/cyclists and I can assure you there are many pedestrians whom seem to be more than happy to put themselves in harms way and think that the person driving the two tonne metal box should just give way regardless. "And as a car driver, it is automatically your fault when at night you hit the cyclist dressed all in black, with no lights, headphones in who has just crossed the road without looking on a dark unlit road." I picked this because this actually happened to a friend of a friend who hit and killed a paper boy. The following investigation did actually find my friends friend not guilty of any wrong doing, but that didn't stop the incident destroying that persons life. And of course there are still some that say it was his fault, just because he hit a cyclist with his car. We all need to learn to share the roads, there is a lot of people on them these days and we all need to leave earlier, slow down and give all other road users some room and common courtesy. Always life life to the full, but stay safe Daniel

    • Daniel - 15/10/2014 16:25

      @Darren - A lot of Common ground, really I think we just got off on the wrong foot. You stay safe too. 'I do walk, I also cycle and I ride a motorbike as well as being a driver, I feel that every car driver should spend a week travelling by one of these other means. I think we would have a lot safer drivers out there. ' Totally agree!!.

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