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Road users urged to follow changed Highway Code at start of Road Safety Week

This year's National Road Safety Week was launched today (Monday) with the theme 'Safe Roads for All', emphasising the importance of everyone following changes to the Highway Code to protect people more at risk, such as those on foot and bicycle.

Children at Ravenfield Primary School, Rotherham, officially launched the Week. Nine children - a figure representing the number of pedestrians and cyclists killed every week across Britain in 2021 - held Road Safety Week placards.

The changes to The Highway Code aim to help improve road safety for people walking, cycling, and also horse riding and were publicised by the government earlier this year. The Code sets out a hierarchy of road users, with those who can cause the most harm having the greatest responsibility to protect others on the road.

Road Safety Week is coordinated by Brake, the road safety charity, and in support of the Department for Transport’s 'THINK!' Campaign. Brake also runs the National Road Victim Service, providing bereaved and seriously injured families with dedicated caseworkers, delivering emotional support, practical care, and access to many other services road victims need.

Millions of people across the UK will be taking part in Road Safety Week 2022 (14-20 November), as thousands of schools, communities, organisations, and emergency services launch local activities to help raise awareness of the new Highway Code and spread the message to improve road safety across the nation.

Nine children from Ravenfield Primary Academy, Rotherham, hold Road Safety Week banners representing the number of pedestrians and cyclists killed every week across Britain in 2021.

Image credit: PA

Brake chief executive Mary Williams OBE said: “Road crashes devastate families who are bereaved and seriously injured. Road Safety Week is an opportunity for everyone – including drivers, and also employers, and community leaders – to come together and make roads safe for all, particularly the most vulnerable.

"Drivers can follow the Highway Code; slowing down and giving people space is vital for safety. Employers can implement safe driving policies for their employees. Community leaders can work with their local authorities for measures that protect people, such as cycle paths and 20mph limits. Road casualties are an appalling carnage that can and must end, through us all taking the right steps.”

Roads minister Richard Holden said: “Everyone should be confident using our roads and we’re committed to continually improving road safety. I’m delighted to support Brake’s fantastic work across Road Safety Week to promote the changes to the Highway Code and help all road users understand their responsibility to protect those more at risk.”

Simon Marsh, CEO, VisionTrack, said: “Our vision is to create a world where all road-users are kept safe from harm and so we are incredibly proud to be supporting Brake, once again, on its annual Road Safety Week. As part of our activity, we’ve reached out to our customer base, both in the UK and abroad, who are collectively responsible for fleet drivers travelling over four million miles every day, to share important road safety messages. Together, we can create even more opportunities to drive the vital road safety agenda.”

Ailsa Firth, director of HR at Arval UK, said: “With more than 185,000 vehicles on UK roads, we have a responsibility to take action to help improve safety for all road users. As the age of zero-emission travel is upon us, new modes of sustainable transport are becoming available, opening up roads to alternative technology, which in turn adjusts people’s driving styles and capabilities. We need to keep safety at the heart of that change and the forefront of all of our minds and therefore we are proud to continue our support for Brake and Road Safety Week in its mission to make our roads a safer place for all.”

Bob Naylor, vice president of transport at DHL UKI, said: “DHL is proud to continue to sponsor Brake and the ‘Safe Roads for All’ Road Safety Week campaign 2022. Our 'Safety First' culture strives not only to keep our colleagues safe on the roads, but also other vulnerable road users. DHL sites across the UK are preparing to participate in a variety of road safety-related activities which share the theme’s messages and raises awareness that ‘Everyone’s Life Matters’ on our roads.”

Road Safety Week is organised by Brake, the road safety charity founded in 1995, and sponsored by Arval UK, DHL Supply Chain and VisionTrack.

Brake campaigns for safe and healthy roads through supporting government policies and investment and through projects that help local communities, schools and employers work for safe and pollution-free streets.

More information about Brake's work is available online.

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