Travel like you know them - understand their risks  

Date published: 18 September 2023 11:41
Dated: 18 September 2023 12:38:12

In 2021 across South Yorkshire, 10 pedestrians, eight motorcyclists and one pedal cyclist lost their lives on local roads.

That’s 19 people who never returned home to their families from their journey. 

As part of the National Police Chiefs’ Council ‘Vulnerable Road Users’ week, we’re asking everyone to understand and acknowledge the dangers faced by pedestrians, and those on horses and bikes.

In addition to the fatalities, 127 pedestrians, 92 motorcyclists, 88 cyclists and 16 horse riders were involved in serious collisions.

Nationally data continues to show an increase in fatalities and those seriously injured on the road network. We’re urging everyone to ‘travel like you know them’; a government initiative to encourage empathy by sharing a snapshot of the road user.

Roads policing Sergeant Mark Bradey explains more about officers’ efforts. He said: “Pedestrians, cyclists and horse riders don’t have the same level of protection that drivers do in their cars, and are often harder for other drivers to see on the road.

“Protecting all roads users is daily business for us, in our efforts to create safer roads and reduce fatalities and those seriously injured. But this week we’re upping our efforts to share information about how everyone can play their part.

“This doesn’t mean that the responsibility lies with vehicle drivers, we will also be encouraging those on bikes and foot to increase their awareness and not put themselves in danger.”

During this week, officers will be carrying out pro-active patrols, focussing on school areas around drop off and pick up times, those riding on electric scooters and bikes, and engaging in any opportunities to raise awareness.

The highway code encourages road users to:

  • give priority at junctions to people cycling straight ahead and people waiting to cross or already crossing the road
  • pass horse riders at under 10mph, allow at least two metres of space and keep to a low speed when passing people walking on the road
  • leave at least 1.5 metres when overtaking cyclists at speeds of up to 30mph, and give them more space when overtaking at higher speeds
  • remember that people cycling may ride two abreast or in the centre of the lane if it is safer to do so, pulling in when safe to allow vehicles to overtake

For more information on road safety, please visit the South Yorkshire Safer Roads Partnership website.

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