Officers in Cumbria are reminding drivers of their responsibilities as part of the National Police Chief Council’s (NPCC) two wheels campaign.

The two wheels campaign is aimed at educating all road users but highlights that those on two wheels have less protection and are more at risk of serious injury or death.

On 29th January 2022 changes were made to the Highway code to improve the safety of road users cycling, walking and riding horses. You can see the eight changes you need know here – The Highway Code: 8 changes you need to know from 29 January 2022 – GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)

One of the changes introduced a new ‘hierarchy of road users’ placing those most at risk in the event of a collision at the top of the hierarchy. However, it does not remove the need for everyone to behave responsibly.

In 2021, there were over 150 collisions involving motorcyclists and cyclists in Cumbria with a number of them resulting in serious or, sadly, fatal injury.

Sergeant Claire Sampson from Cumbria Police’s Mobile Support Group said: “We all have a part to play in ensuring all road users especially vulnerable road users such as cyclists or horse riders are not put at risk.

“Cumbria is a predominately rural county, and we want all road users to enjoy our road networks safely.

“Road users should take care, watch their speed and drive to the conditions of the road.

“Those on two wheels must also consider their own safety and making sure they are wearing the right equipment.”

Advice for road users

Cyclists

  • Positioning – ride in the centre of the lane on quiet roads, in slower-moving traffic and at the approach to junctions or road narrowings. Keep at least 0.5m and further where safer when riding on busy roads.
  • Take care passing parked vehicles leaving enough space to avoid being hit by a car door.
  • Watch out for pedestrians.
  • Ensure your bike is road worthy, check your light, tyres, reflectors and brakes.
  • Be seen, make sure your wearing bright clothing and protective clothing and helmet.
  • Take care when on the road, give timely and clear signals and look out for other drivers who might not have seen you.

Motorcyclists

  • Motorcyclist’s take care when overtaking and on country roads.
  • Only overtake when it’s safe to do so
  • Take care when on the road, give timely and clear signals and look out for other drivers who might not have seen you.
  • Make sure your wearing protective clothing and a helmet
  • Ensure your motorcycle is road worthy, check your light, tyres, reflectors and brakes.

Motorists

  • Ensure you give space; the recommended safe passing distance is 1.5m.
  • Only overtake when it’s safe to do so.
  • At junctions or when undertaking a manoeuvre, look out for cyclists, motorbikes and pedestrians.
  • Always check for cyclists when opening your car door, pulling out at a junction, or when doing a manoeuvre.

Officers from the mobile support group will be at Devils Bridge on Saturday 16th April to engage with drivers, motorcyclists and cyclists making sure they are taking steps to keep themselves and others safe.

The Crash bike will also be on show which is a visual display of the tragic impact that some collisions can result in, the bike is that of Allan Stratt who sadly lost his life in 2018 following a collision at Hartside.

Cumbria’s Police and Crime Commissioner, Peter McCall, said: “We all have a responsibility to drive carefully and be considerate of others when behind the wheel.

“Those on bicycles and motorbikes are far more likely to be seriously injured as they don’t have as much protection surrounding them, so it is essential that drivers pay close attention to their blind spots, look carefully at junctions and check their mirrors for any vulnerabilities.

“We all want to get home safe at the end of every day, if we all drive to the rules of the road and look out for each other we can reduce serious injuries and fatalities on our roads.”

The two wheel campaign will include two weeks of education and a week of enforcement from 11th to 19th April.

Cumbria Police motorcycle safety initiative

We are currently developing a road safety initiative for motorcyclists.

If you are interested in advanced riding techniques and how they can improve your safety and enjoyment whilst our riding.

Sign up below for future launch dates – Cumbria Police Motorcycle Safety Initiative (office.com)


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