Look Out – Be Seen – Be Safe

The London Road Safety Council has launched a new campaign to highlight key winter road safety messages to drivers, motorcyclists, cyclists and pedestrians.

When the clocks changed at the end of British Summer Time, (25 October), we entered a most dangerous time of the year for road users.

The advent of darker evenings and the arrival of winter weather results in an increase in road casualties, especially for pedestrians and cyclists.

With this in mind, the LRSC has launched a new campaign (12 November) to encourage drivers, motorcyclists, cyclists and pedestrians to take extra care on the roads this winter.

The campaign comprises six short films, which are being promoted on social media. The films put road-users’ knowledge and awareness to the test, and highlight the following important points:

  • Drivers should ensure their windscreens are clean and smear free to reduce distortion and glare.
  • Drivers should watch their speed and drive within a safe braking distance of their headlamp range
  • Motorcyclists and cyclists should ensure they wear hi-vis and have effective lighting on their machines
  • Pedestrians should be aware of their invisibility especially in areas of poor street lighting, and wear hi-vis to help them be seen

James Parker, the LRSC’s executive officer, said: “An unexpected impact of the Covid-19 pandemic is that it has seen a huge shift towards more people walking and cycling in London.

“The mayor for London set a target to achieve a ten-fold increase in cycling and a five-fold increase in walking trips.

“The messages in our films are especially important for those who are new to winter walking and cycling, and we hope that the non-preachy style of these adverts will have a positive impact on how road users address their own safety and that of others.”

But it is not just pedestrians and those on two-wheels that the campaign is aimed at - drivers have a vital role to play.

The LRSC advises drivers to: 

  • Adjust your eyes to the dark before driving. Low light levels cause the pupil of the eye to become larger and worsen any focusing errors.  Wear glasses or contact lenses with an up-to-date prescription
  • Keep your distance. It’s more difficult to judge distance in the dark, so allow extra space between you and the car in front
  • Make sure your windscreen and other windows are kept clean, and ensure the washer fluid is always topped up
  • Regularly check and adjust the mirrors. Consider a car with an auto-dimming rear-view mirror
  • Be visible. Make sure your headlights are working
  • Dip don’t dazzle. Dip your headlights when approaching oncoming traffic. Around 300 collisions each year are caused by headlight glare

The LRSC is running this six-week long campaign on behalf of the following local authorities: City of Westminster, Ealing, Hillingdon, Richmond, Hounslow, Wandsworth, Havering, Barnet, Waltham Forest and Newham.

The films: