RMG/CWU Annual National Road Safety Week, 19 – 25 November 2018 – Focus on Supporting ‘BRAKE’ & ‘Think’ Annual Road Safety Week – Theme “Bike Smart”:
To: All Branches
[In the UK there are 400 motorcyclists and cyclists killed, 8,500 seriously injured and 38,000 casualties every year]
Background and context
This National Brake Road Safety Week (19-25 November) is raising awareness of the safety of those on two wheels and encouraging everyone to be “Bike Smart”. Cyclists and motorcyclists are among the most vulnerable road users in the UK, with more than 100 riders injured every day in needless, preventable collisions.
The UK National, Annual Road Safety week is an initiative created and co-ordinated annually by “BRAKE” the Road Safety Charity, supporting and encouraging organisations, employers, fleet operators and Trade Unions such as Royal Mail and the CWU to raise road safety awareness and prevent casualties year-round. “THINK” the UK government’s designated road safety campaign now jointly supports the National Road Safety Week.
Every 30 seconds someone somewhere in the world is killed in a road crash. The misery of road death and injuries caused by vehicles is a shameful epidemic that we should all try to reduce.
The HSE estimates that a third of all road traffic accidents involve someone who is at work. Last year over 500 people were killed, over 5,000 seriously injured and 40,000 slightly injured in collisions involving a driver, driving for work.
For any company with staff who drive for work – whether it’s a fleet of commercial vehicles or company cars – ignoring fleet drivers and road safety can cost dearly. As well as being devastating to those involved, road crashes have massive financial, reputational and legal implications for organisations. For example, in the UK, the cost to employers of at-work road crashes is estimated to be around £3 billion a year.
Road Safety Week is the beginning of a campaign to reduce accidents, injuries, deaths and suffering as well as reducing business costs through implementing a road risk management programme of effective policies and procedures. Investing in fleet risk management, improved
driving standards and awareness-raising therefore makes sound moral and financial sense for all organisations with staff who drive for work.
The campaign is all about improving road and driver safety, supporting, coaching and assisting drivers. This month – 19-25 November, is the ‘BRAKE’ road safety charity’s annual, UK National Road Safety Week, so Royal Mail Group, working with the CWU and Unite/CMA along with “BRAKE”, “THINK”, RoSPA” and “Road Peace” will be focusing on jointly supporting National Road Safety Week.
All Royal Mail drivers have a responsibility to drive safely and minimise risk to themselves and the public. As part of a business-wide focus on road safety, we are sharing a series of Road Safety messages with drivers in Logistics on “Bike Smart”.
Facts and Figures
In the UK the number of accidents involving Bikes (Motorcycles and Cycles) is huge, causing needless carnage, crashes, injuries and damage plus untold suffering and stops people living safe and healthy lives.
- 100 cyclists are killed, 3000 seriously injured and there are 18,500 casualties every year in the UK.
- 300 motorcyclists are killed, 5,500 seriously injured and there are 19,500 casualties every year in the UK.
- 45% of all cyclists and 41% of all motorcyclists’ deaths occur at or near junctions.
- Last year there were 38 cyclists and 6 motorcyclists involved in RTC’s with Royal Mail Group vehicles – in the last two years, 2 were seriously injured and 2 motorcyclists were killed.
- 67 claims have been settled by Royal Mail Group during last year that involved cycles or motorcycles costing half a million pounds.
- Every 30 seconds someone somewhere in the world is killed in a road crash.
- The misery of road death and injuries caused by vehicles is a shameful epidemic that we should all try to reduce.
- For any company with staff who drive for work – whether it’s a fleet of commercial vehicles, company cars, HGVs etc., – ignoring fleet driver and road safety can cost dearly.
- Managing road risk is also a fundamental part of an employer’s legal and moral duty of care towards its employees and members of the public.
- Driving is the riskiest activity most employees engage in. Road crashes account for 39% of work-related deaths in the European Union.
The ‘BRAKE’ & ‘THINK’ ‘Bike Smart Campaign Aims to Get ALL Drivers to make roads safer for people on bicycles and motorbikes by:-
- Taking time to look properly before pulling out at junctions
Turn your head to look, don’t just rely on a sideways glance. Bikes are smaller and narrower than cars and it can take longer for our eyes and our brain to notice that they are there. Turning your head and looking for longer will help you to spot bikes and will help you to judge their speed and distance, so you can pull out safely and avoid a crash.
- Always stopping behind the lines at a junction
Never drive into a bike box if the traffic light is amber or red. Riders need this space to enable them to move safely through junctions. Don’t drive or park in cycle lanes either.
- Leaving plenty of room when overtaking or passing bikes
When passing a bike, you need to give as much space as you’d give another car when overtaking. This means at least 150 cm between you and the rider.
- Slowing down on rural roads
Most crashes involving bikes happen on rural roads, and many of these are because drivers are travelling too fast. Slowing down will help you to take sharp bends more safely and you will be more likely to spot riders in front of you.
- Driving slowly in places where people live
Driving more slowly will give you more time to spot danger and more time to react. It also means you can stop a lot more quickly. 20mph is the right speed in places where people live, work and play. Slow traffic makes more people want to walk and cycle in their communities.
- Avoiding ‘dooring’ of hitting bikes with your vehicle door by using the Dutch reach to check for bikes.
Instead of using the hand nearest the door to open it, reach across with your opposite hand. This forces you to turn your head so you can check for bikes before you open the vehicle door.
- Hours of Darkness
Not all cyclists display lights on their cycles or dress in bright colours so be more vigilant when driving during the hours of darkness especially at peak times which coincide with school/college start and finish times.
The CWU Health, Safety & Environment Department has been actively supporting the Road Safety Week Campaign annually since 2003 and is pleased to be involved again. Some key points for ASRs:
- The Royal Mail Safety Team and CWU Health and Safety Department have agreed to work together on fleet and driver safety, raising awareness and standards, gaining buy-in, managing and reducing the risk to drivers, vehicles, and journeys; and to continually improve fleet and driver safety.
- The Royal Mail Group Regional Safety Health and Environment (SHE) Teams covering Royal Mail, Parcelforce and RMSS have been asked to liaise with the ASRs from both Unions to discuss participation and support with the road safety week’s activities.
- CWU ASRs will be fully involved as set out in detail in the attached ASR Activity Plan with full input, participation and support.
- ASRs should contact local SHE team members and Area/Sector/Unit Managers and PiCs to discuss the activities planned as soon as possible.
- The initiative is corrective and supportive not punitive. Participation remains voluntary and is encouraged.
CWU Area Safety Reps Activity Plan for Road Safety Week
An Activity Plan for CWU Area Safety Reps is attached. ASRs were asked to follow the ASR Activity Plan/Guide and Schedule for the week. During Road Safety Week ASRs are asked to focus their daily Workplace Safety Inspections on a number of Units, preferably high impacting units and liaise with line managers to agree which units should be focused on and visited/inspected during the November National Road Safety Week (RSW). ASRs should also check that front line managers complete their activity plans which support the ‘National Brake Road Safety Week’.
“BRAKE” Road Safety Week Video
Here is the link to the “BRAKE” animation video which will hopefully be used during the WTLL sessions:-https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fV84viOy3ok&feature=youtu.be
Attachments: Road Safety Week:-
- Activity Plans
National Health, Safety & Environment Officer