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No need for Speed - Road Safety Week 2020

Essex County Fire and Rescue Service is supporting Road Safety Week (16–22 November), the UK’s biggest road safety event coordinated by Brake, the road safety charity. 

Statistics show that speed contributes to one in five fatal crashes in the UK so this year the charity are highlighting the issue of speed with their campaign “No need to Speed”. 

During this week we will be sharing the what, the why, and the where of speed, because whether you’re walking to school, riding on a country road or driving for work, the speed of traffic matters to your safety. 

In a crash, 1mph can mean the difference between life and death. But people still regularly break speed limits or travel too fast for the conditions of the road. With someone injured on a UK road every four minutes, and vehicle speed playing a part in every crash, it’s time to come together to say that there is No Need to Speed. 

Why is speed so important? 

The formula is simple: the higher the speed, the longer the stopping distance, the harder the crash and the greater the risk of death and injury. No Need to Speed is a reminder to everyone of how the speed they travel affects other people. 

Every time we’re on the road we need to consider what speed is appropriate to keep ourselves and others safe. Follow these safety tips to keep yourself, your family and other roads users safe: 

  • The speed limit is a limit not a target 

In some road conditions, including fog and rain and traffic flow, even driving at the speed limit could be too fast. 

  • Country roads often have sharp bends 

Stay in control and give yourself time to react to unexpected hazards by braking before the bend, not in it. Be aware that there may be unexpected hazards such as blind bends, vehicles coming out of junctions and animals on country roads. The national speed limit on single carriage roads is 60mph, but there will be times you need to drive under that in order to drive correctly for the conditions. In fact most people do on these roads – the average free flow speed is 48mph. 

  • Driving too fast for the conditions is bad driving 

Driving too close to the car in front, undertaking and failing to signal are widely accepted as examples of bad driving. However, some drivers fail to accept that driving too fast is also poor driving despite the fact that this is a contributory factor in hundreds of deaths and thousands of injuries every year. 

  • Consider the consequences of causing an accident due to driving at excessive speed 

If you cause an accident you will have to live with the emotional consequences of deaths or injuries caused to others. 

More information available on the Safer Essex Roads website: www.saferessexroads.org/road-users/advice/speed/ 

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