Police support bid to reduce road related fatalities

Northumbria Police's Op Dragoon team are supporting a European day of action to reduce the number of people killed on our roads.

Tuesday, 30th August 2016, 8:32 am
Updated Tuesday, 30th August 2016, 1:39 pm
John Heckels

European road safety network TIPSOL are hoping that September 21 will be the first European Day Without A Road Death and called on the support of all road users on the continent.

The campaign is aimed at encouraging the public to reflect on their behaviour and attitude towards driving in a bid to reduce the risk of a serious accident on our roads.

Our Op Dragoon team have already been working hard to educate people about the dangers of our roads and regularly visit schools, colleges and events to spread the road safety message.

In the past 12 months the number of fatalities on our roads has fallen by 32 per cent following a number of road safety campaigns but despite that 26 people were still killed on our region’s roads.

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Now Op Dragoon are throwing their weight behind the intiative - dubbed Project Edward - and want the public to show their support by sending us pictures of the number ‘zero’ on Twitter.

People will be encouraged to make the number zero with their hands or using road-related objects such as a tyre, steering wheel or a branded logo on their vehicle.

Chief Inspector John Heckels, head of the Op Dragoon team, said: “One death as a result of a road traffic accident is one too many and more work still needs to be done to help make our roads safer.

“Losing a member of your family is devastating and one of the most difficult parts of our job is knocking on the door of a victim’s family to break the news that their loved one has passed away.

“People may get behind the wheel and think they are invincible but we know that is simply not the case. Collisions can happen in a blink of the eye and the results can be horrendous.

“We know that there will probably be more fatalities on our roads in the future but those types of incidents are far less likely to occur if people treat the roads, and other road users, with respect.

“Everyone is a road user in some way or another whether you’re a taxi driver, farmer, motorcyclist, pedal cyclist, haulier, public transport provider, horse rider, walker, young child or patient transport user.

“We want you all to be involved in this campaign and play your part in making our roads safer. Tweet us a picture and make it obvious to us what kind of road user you are.

“If you’re a lollipop person, let us see your uniform. If you’re a tractor driver, show us your boiler suit! We want everyone to get behind this campaign and get everyone to back this campaign.”

Support the campaign by sending pictures to the @OpDragoon account using the hashtag #ProjectEdward and they will share the best pictures with their followers.

Op Dragoon was launched in the Spring of 2014 and is aimed at making our region’s roads as safe as possible through engagement, education and enforcement.

Earlier this summer they launched the #DontBeSilly campaign to help reduce the number of accidents on our roads this summer.

As part of that children from Shaftoe Trust Primary School produced a video offering advice to motorists about wearing seatbelts, respecting the speed limit and the consequences of drink and drug driving.

Watch that video by following the link here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yRRbpCLGhps

To find out more about Op Dragoon visit the Northumbria Police website and to find out more about TIPSOL visit https://www.tispol.org/.