Drivers are being warned to avoid rural roads to help with the coronavirus
Drivers can do there bit and help the NHS
Brake, the road safety charity, has warned drivers to steer clear of rural roads to help with the fight against the Coronavirus. By decreasing traffic levels on these roads, that cause the most fatalities and serious injury, will keep people away from the hospitals and ease the burden on the NHS.
To tackle this deadly and invisible disease Britons have been urged by our prime minister Boris Johnson to stay at home when possible. Brake has warned drivers that if you do need to leave your house for essential work or food shopping then you should plan your route and try to avoid the rural roads if possible.
Casualty statistics 2018 – Rural roads
The annual report from Brake in 2018 for road deaths showed that 58% of these deaths occurred on rural roads compared to urban roads. There was 1030 fatalities on the rural roads, that is an average of 21 people per week. Data from the government reported that you are 3 more times going to be killed or 33% will suffer a serious injury on the rural roads compared to the urban roads.
Road users behaviour
The main cause for crashes on the rural roads is drivers driving too fast. Almost 7 out of 10 drivers drive over the speed limit on rural roads, they think this is acceptable. Driving too fast or above the speed limit is more than likely going to cause head on collisions, collisions at junctions or vehicles veering off the road.
The department for transport reported in 2018 that there was over 10% of vehicles that exceeded the 60 mph national speed limit on the single carriageway. The stopping distance for 60 mph is 240 feet (73m) that equates to 5 bus lengths. These road users were labelled irresponsible and dangerous from Brake the road safety charity.
Safety tips for leaving your house if essential
If you need to leave your house and drive on the rural roads then here are some clues and tips you should be looking out for.
Look out for sign posts, most common will be signs for sharp bends, T junctions, crossroads and speed limits.
Flashing headlights from oncoming vehicles on the bends at night, animals potentially running out, cars emerging from crossroads or T junctions, checking mirrors for any motorbikes that may want to overtake, looking ahead for tractors or cyclists.
Try to stay at home and keep safe
Joshua Harris, director of campaigns for Brake had this to say “We must all come together in this national crisis and keep everyone safe. Unless absolutely essential, then we would urge everyone to avoid and stop driving on the perilous rural roads. This is only going to put your self at risk of being killed or seriously injured on the road, this will will not help the NHS what so ever and put an added burden to them. Our advice to everyone is stay at home, keep you and your family safe. If essential and you must leave your home then make sure you stay within the speed limit and keep an eye at all times for unexpected hazards at all times.”