Safety plea issued ahead of busy Bank Holiday weekend

By Zoë Uglow   |   Reporter   |
Saturday 4th June 2022 4:00 pm
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Road Closed signs. Tuesday May 12th 2020
(PA )

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A Devon and Cornwall road safety partnership has issued a plea to all road users ahead of the Jubilee Bank Holiday weekend.

It follows a spate of serious collisions involving motorcycles which has seen 18 bikers killed or critically injured on our roads.

The extended four-day bank holiday will see many people travelling around the South West’s road network to visit friends and family, attend events or make the most of the stunning scenery.

The Vision Zero South West road safety partnership has urged extra caution from motorists and other road users over this special bank holiday weekend.

Supt Adrian Leisk, strategic roads policing lead and chair of the Vision Zero South West enforcement sub-group, said: “We’ve seen a series of terrible tragedies on our roads over the past few weeks, all of which will have had a devastating impact on those involved – as well as their friends and families.

“Motorcyclists are vulnerable road users, not least because they do not have a steel cage around them to protect them if they are involved in a collision. We know that speed is a major contributory factor in many motorcycles collisions, as is drivers not looking carefully at junctions.

“I would urge all road users to leave extra time for their journeys this Bank Holiday weekend as the roads are likely to be busy. This will allow you to enjoy a relaxed journey, give you extra time to look twice at junctions and help you travel at a slower, safer speed.

“At the moment, the weather is looking mixed for the extended Bank Holiday weekend, with both sun and rain forecast at various times. As such, we are expecting to see more motorcyclists on the roads.

“My plea to bikers would be to ride within your limits - and always accounting for the weather – but also to make sure you are wearing all the relevant safety gear and PPE. I know wearing a full set of protective clothing may not seem that appealing in hot weather, but it’s entirely preferable to sustaining serious injuries in the event of a collision.”

Supt Leisk reminded road users that police and speed detection officers will be out on many routes over the weekend to help keep people safe.

He added: “It would be fantastic if all our officers could come back at the end of this weekend and have no incidents to report – ultimately, that is our goal.

“But sadly there is usually a small minority who think they know better, so rest assured our officers will be on hand to deal with any dangerous or illegal driving.”

Chris Boston, Watch Manager for road safety at Devon and Somerset Fire and Rescue Service said: “Throughout the South West we have seen an alarming rise in fatal road traffic collisions.

“We advise all road users to drive under the speed limit – remember, it’s a limit not a target - always wear a seatbelt, avoid distractions and never use your mobile phone whilst driving.

“Have a safe and happy Jubilee weekend from us all at the road safety department at Devon and Somerset Fire and Rescue Service.”

Charlotte Leventis, Head of Communications at Devon Air Ambulance, added: “Bank holiday weekends often bring an increase in emergency calls for our crews to respond, especially when fair weather is forecast, and more people venture out to enjoy their hobbies and leisure activities.

“If biking is your passion, please ride safely on our roads so that you may return home, safe and well having enjoyed a great day out in Devon.”

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