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  • Writer's pictureSafer Highways

Enhancing Road Safety in South Yorkshire: A United Call for Vigilance and Care

In the initial months of the year, South Yorkshire’s roads witnessed a tragic toll, with nine lives claimed in accidents.

In response, South Yorkshire Police, in collaboration with the South Yorkshire Safer Roads Partnership, is issuing a strong call to action for all road users to enhance vigilance and foster mutual care to mitigate the risks of fatal or severe injuries on the roads.

Roads Policing Inspector Matt Collings highlighted the heightened vulnerability of pedestrians during the winter, noting that six of the fatalities were pedestrians. He emphasized that while each road traffic collision has its distinct circumstances, the common thread is the need for heightened awareness and proactive measures to ensure collective safety.

The police underscore the amplified risks during winter, with adverse weather and reduced daylight significantly diminishing the visibility of vulnerable road users. They recommend pedestrians opting for brightly coloured attire, adhering to pavements, and using designated crossings, especially during commutes to work or while accompanying children to school.

The narrative took a poignant turn with the mention of Ellie Smart, a woman remembered for her loyalty and vivacity, who tragically represents the human cost of these statistics.

The advice extends to all road users: pedestrians should not presume visibility to drivers, and drivers are urged to be especially watchful for pedestrians and cyclists, particularly around obscured areas like parked vehicles. The importance of reduced speed is underscored, illustrating how a mere reduction of five miles per hour could significantly increase a pedestrian’s survival chances in the event of a collision.

Inspector Collings reflected on the harrowing impact of road accidents witnessed by the Roads Policing officers, reinforcing the commitment to enforcing safer road behaviours and the judicial pursuit of violations such as mobile phone usage while driving, speeding, and other dangerous behaviours.

The collective effort towards safer roads is framed not just as a legal obligation but as a

moral imperative, with the potential to prevent further loss and suffering. The emphasis is on the critical, life-saving difference that heightened attention and minor behavioural adjustments can make.

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