How can the safety of roads be increased?
The safety of our roads involves a variety of factors and there are multiple issues to consider when trying to improve it. There are roughly five deaths on average per day on UK roads, suggesting more could be done to increase road safety. These casualties involve all road users including pedestrians, cyclists, motorcyclists, cars and trucks.
Here, we will take a look at the main factors involved in road safety and ways in which they can be improved.
Speed limits & speed bumps
Enforcing speed limits appropriate for the road conditions and surroundings is vital in keeping road-users and pedestrians safe. Built-up areas of towns and villages need a lower speed limit than motorways or country roads. Speed bumps are particularly important around schools and playgrounds and other sensitive or residential areas where there might be a lot of pedestrians.
Highway code knowledge
It’s important that all road users understand the highway code, particularly when it comes to road signs and speed limits. Knowing when not to overtake, what the national speed limit is and what all road warning signs mean is imperative for road safety. It’s also vital that road users are aware of the rules on parking and waiting at the road-side as well as driving safely in adverse weather conditions.
Many roads contain blind spots where road users need to be alert to other drivers not being able to see them, or vice versa. To improve safety around blind spots, convex (dome-shaped) mirrors can be added to give drivers and cyclists a wider-angle view and reduce blind spots. RS convex mirrors are available for indoors or outdoors and can be fitted to a wall or other surface to improve visibility.
Keeping roads well-maintained helps improve safety for drivers and cyclists and can prevent accidents. Filling in potholes, particularly after extreme weather, and resurfacing can positively impact road safety. Ensuring road markings are clear and re-painted also helps keeps roads safe for drivers. Blocked drains on a road can also cause a safety hazard and should be repaired urgently to avoid any accidents.
All road users should be well-educated on the safety of driving and cycling and knowledgeable about all traffic laws. Educating children on road safety procedures, particularly around crossings and traffic light systems is important to ensure their welfare as pedestrians.
Whether using our roads as a pedestrian, cyclist or driver, it’s important to understand all safety laws and rules. Being well-educated, following guidelines and being aware of other road users will increase road safety and help prevent accidents.