In case you weren’t aware, the clocks go back on Sunday 29th October.
The October clock change signals the beginning of winter and the start of darker
evenings. One of the consequences of this is an increased risk to people’s safety on the roads. Vulnerable road users like children, the elderly, pedestrians, cyclists and motorcyclists are particularly at risk of being involved in an incident.
Why are darker evenings dangerous?
There are several reasons why there may be an increase in casualty rates in the darker winter evenings.
- Firstly, pedestrians, cyclists, road signs, and other road users are simply harder to spot when it’s darker.
- Drivers also tend be more tired first thing in the morning or after a day’s work and darkness also has an impact on our alertness, so concentration levels are lower at these times of day.
- Both children and adults tend to make social or leisure trips in the evenings so in winter, these trips are more likely to be made in the dark.
What can you do?
There are many things that all road users can do to help keep everyone safe on our roads. Checkout Tales of the Road for ideas on keeping children and young people safe.
- Take more care and time looking for cyclists and people waiting to cross the roads
- Don’t be distracted by mobile phones, loud music or other distractions
- Plan your journey and leave plenty of time for your journey
- Wear bright/reflective clothing
- Cross the road in well-lit places and designated crossings
- Don’t use phones or hand held devices whilst crossing the road
- Wear Hi-Viz clothes
- Make sure your lights are on and not dazzling drives or other road users
- If your lights are rechargeable, make sure you have enough charge for your journey
- Avoid using headphones whilst on your bike
- Look behind before you turn, overtake or stop
- Use arm signals before you turn right or left
- Obey traffic lights and road signs