A CAMPAIGN AIMED at driving home the road safety message is being relaunched today as the darker nights begin to draw in.
Highlands and Moray Labour MSP David Stewart was behind the NOSDAT campaign (North of Scotland Driver Awareness Team) – now he is launching ‘Switch onto Safer Roads’.
NOSDAT was first set up in 2013 and is designed to be an educational tool to persuade drivers to ‘Switch on’ their dipped headlights in all forms of poor visibility. Previously the group set up and ran the ‘Sensible Driving Always Arriving Deadly Mates’ campaign, after the tragic deaths of two Inverness teenagers in a road collision in the city.
This award-winning campaign, along with other similar type campaigns over the past six years, are all designed to make our roads safer. New cars on the road registered after February 1, 2011, come with daytime L.E.D. running lights which help with the visibility of such vehicles.
In February 2012, HGV’s and buses new on the road also came fitted with the L.E.D. running lights.
David Stewart said: “Our group are always looking at ways we can make our roads safer and in particular we want to use education as the medium to get our messages across. To date we have been very fortunate to have the support of local businesses and the media to help us do this.
“In relation to the Switch Onto Safer Roads campaign we worked with Stagecoach Bus and Acorn Signs, Inverness. This re-launched campaign is designed to do something about the number of drivers who fail to display dipped headlights in poor visibility.
“These lights should be displayed when driving conditions are poor, such as whilst driving in rain, snow, mist, fog and of course poor visibility due to darkness.”
The original campaign featured a leaflet designed by a local school pupil Rosie Watters, who is now undergoing a spell of work experience at Mr Stewart’s Inverness office. The rear of the leaflet has 12 key road safety tips and we were fortunate to be offered advertising space on the rear of a Stagecoach double decker back in 2013/14.
Mr Stewart added: “You do not have to travel far from home or work to see the number of drivers who just don’t get it. These drivers should remember that it is not only about using your lights to see, but about using your lights to be seen by all other road users, including and in particular pedestrians.
“I am delighted that this year Halford stores in Inverness and Elgin will distribute our educational leaflets to local customers during September and October. Again a classic sign of the support local businesses has given to our team over the years.
“It is the time of year for drivers to check their vehicles to make sure that all lights are fully functional and set at the right height. Staff based at Halfords Stores in Inverness and Elgin are more than happy to assist drivers with these and any other necessary vehicle requirements and or advice.”
“These stores will also be able to assist cyclists will all their lighting requirements as it is vital that cyclists also adhere to the law with regards lighting up times, which at the end of the day is all about their safety and that of other road users.”
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