Highways Agency Urges All Drivers To Pay Attention Driving Through Roadworks And Help Save Lives

As part of National Motorway Month, the Highways Agency is urging all drivers to slow down and take care when driving through roadworks, with its Roadworker Safety Week starting on Monday 13 August 2007.

In 2006, two people were killed and 19 seriously injured while working on England's major A roads and motorways, improving and maintaining them to help drivers enjoy better journeys in the future.

Working on, or near, a live road is a dangerous profession. Across the country people are working to improve our road network and keep it safe and fit for purpose. So the Highways Agency is asking all drivers to pay attention and stick to the reduced speed limits through works.

Derek Turner, Highways Agency Director of Traffic Operations, said:

"With an average of 3,000 to 4,000 roadworkers on motorways and major A roads at any one time, motorists are being reminded that driving safely through roadworks saves lives. Loss of life, or a serious injury, is a very real threat to these workers. The traffic management that we put out is not there for the sake of it, it's there to serve a purpose - protecting our workers from danger and also keeping the public safe as they drive through the roadworks."

"I urge all drivers to pay close attention when driving through roadworks and stick to the reduced speed limits for the workers' safety and for their own and their passengers' safety."

Edmund King, Executive Director for the RAC Foundation:

"In the summer, motorists can become especially irritated with delays on the roads, since they are eager to reach their holiday destination. Unfortunately, this sense of frustration can be the catalyst for reckless driving through road works, in an attempt to speed up the journey. Ironically- speeding through road works leads to accidents and hence further delays."

"The RAC Foundation would urge holidaymakers to plan ahead this summer, leaving ample time to get to their destination in order to account for delays caused both by road works and increased traffic flows. It is essential that 'back-seat drivers' do not put pressure on their driver to up the pace- when there is clearly no option to do so."

The Agency's Safety at Roadworks campaign, launched in 2001, gives six simple messages:
Drivers approaching road works are advised to:
Keep within the speed limit - it is there for your safety.
Get into the correct lane in good time - don't keep switching.
Concentrate on the road ahead, not the roadworks.
Be alert for works traffic leaving or entering roadworks.
Keep a safe distance - there could be queues in front.
Observe all signs - they are there to help you. 13 August 2007 Staff

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