Sashes to make SA’s pedes­tri­ans vis­i­ble

The Witness - Wheels - - MOTORING -

THE Au­to­mo­bile As­so­ci­a­tion (AA), in col­lab­o­ra­tion with the FIA, Ford and Miche­lin, launched a na­tional road safety cam­paign yes­ter­day.

Known as the #ISeeYou cam­paign, the pro­gramme aims to make pedes­tri­ans more vis­i­ble.

This after pedes­trian fa­tal­i­ties on South African roads last year made up more than a third of the to­tal road deaths.

Sta­tis­tics from the Road Man­age­ment Cor­po­ra­tion (RTMC) show 5 410 pedes­tri­ans died on our roads in 2016. This rep­re­sents a shock­ing 38% of all deaths on the coun­try’s roads last year, mak­ing pedes­tri­ans, by far, the most vul­ner­a­ble group of road users.

The #ISeeYou mes­sage goes deeper than pedes­trian vis­i­bil­ity, its dual pur­pose is also to drive mu­tual re­spect be­tween mo­torists and pedes­tri­ans.

“One of the key dan­gers for pedes­tri­ans is that they are seen too late by driv­ers. On dimly or un­lit roads, and wear­ing dark clothes, pedes­tri­ans are of­ten ‘in­vis­i­ble’ to mo­torists who may only see them when it’s too late to avoid hit­ting them. It’s a se­ri­ous prob­lem in South Africa, one which we hope this cam­paign will be­gin to ad­dress,” says the AA.

The cam­paign in­cludes print, ra­dio and tele­vi­sion ad­ver­tise­ments high­light­ing the dan­gers pedes­tri­ans face while on the road. It en­cour­ages pedes­tri­ans to make them­selves more vis­i­ble through walk­ing in bet­ter lit ar­eas, and wear­ing cloth­ing that stands out. Mo­torists, too, are en­cour­aged to be aware of pedes­tri­ans while driv­ing.

“Pedes­trian safety re­mains one of the most im­por­tant chal­lenges to road safety au­thor­i­ties in South Africa. We are proud to part­ner with the AA on the vis­i­bil­ity cam­paign, and we would like to work to­gether with com­mu­ni­ties to re­duce pedes­trian fa­tal­i­ties and make our roads safer for all,” says Casper Kruger, manag­ing di­rec­tor of Ford Mo­tor Com­pany SubSa­ha­ran Africa re­gion.

Gan­gan­jot Singh, com­mer­cial di­rec­tor for Miche­lin, said the group has been fund­ing var­i­ous road safety aware­ness and ed­u­ca­tion projects.

Sta­tis­tics show pedes­tri­ans are par­tic­u­larly vul­ner­a­ble at dawn and dusk, or when vis­i­bil­ity is im­paired be­cause of smoke, dust or mist.

A crit­i­cal com­po­nent of the cam­paign is urg­ing pedes­tri­ans to wear re­flec­tive sashes that are eas­ier for driv­ers to see. As part of the ini­tial phase of the cam­paign, 14 000 sashes will be dis­trib­uted to pedes­tri­ans through ac­ti­va­tions across the coun­try. The Fed­er­a­tion In­ter­na­tionale de l’Au­to­mo­bile (FIA) fund­ing was made pos­si­ble through its Road Safety Grant Pro­gramme.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from South Africa

© PressReader. All rights reserved.