A drive to cut road deaths amongst the elderly in Scotland’s largest city was launched this week after latest figures show that five out of six road deaths in Glasgow involve people aged over 65.
In support of the first phase of the Police Scotland ‘Vulnerable Road Users’ campaign which focusses on children, cyclists and older people, officers throughout the Glasgow area will be out on patrol educating road users and pedestrians about road safety.
Since 1 April 2015 until the end of July this year, there were six road deaths and 37 people seriously injured following road crashes in Glasgow. Of the six killed, four were pedestrians and one was a cyclist over the age of 65, prompting a renewed push by officers to the city’s older people.
Superintendent Alan Murray, area commander, said: “Unfortunately, many older people may have difficulty in seeing or hearing approaching traffic, may not be able to accurately judge the speed of vehicles or may not be able to move as quickly as some driver would expect.
“These figures are really concerning to us and we are determined to make sure road-users in Glasgow are aware and take heed of the unpredicatability of pedestrians, drivers and cyclists.
“As well as the authorities working together, pedestrians must take responsibility for the own safety on city streets.
“People are so busy these days and in a hurry to get to where they want to be. They can also become easily distracted, for example, using mobile phones, not paying attention to their surroundings or misjudging the time it takes to cross the road.
“A key piece of advice is to always cross at authorised crossings. It may add a few minutes to your journey but if it keeps you safe then, then it’s worth it. Avoid ‘jay-walking’, crossing from behind parked cars or dodging in and out of moving traffic – no matter how slow it is going – it’s still dangerous.”
Officers will be at various locations throughout the city challenging poor pedestrian safety, reinforcing safety messages as well as enforcing road traffic legislation when it is appropriate to do so.
Superintendent Murray concluded: “We want to make our roads safer and it is essential that we, along with colleagues at ‘Go Safe’ Glasgow, make sure that older people receive the information and advice that can help keep them safe on our roads. To that end we will take every opportunity to meet with our older people in their communities.”
For further information and advice go to www.road-safety.org.uk