WARWICKSHIRE can lead the way on road safety.
That is the aim of Warwickshire Police and Crime Commissioner Philip Seccombe after he pledged more than £300,000 as part of his ‘serious’ bid to cut the number of people killed and injured on the county’s roads.
Mr Seccombe said: “Far too many people are killed or seriously injured on our roads in Warwickshire and we need to encourage a major shift in attitudes among all of our road users to bring these numbers down.
“The scale of the issue is stark – last year there were 35 people killed on Warwickshire’s roads and another 320 people were seriously injured.
“I am determined to find new ways of ensuring that our county is as safe as it can be for all road users and pedestrians and that’s why I have committed to making significant funds available to really champion the cause of road safety.
“This is just the start of the journey to make our highways and byways truly safe. I want Warwickshire to really lead the way nationally on road safety.”
The Commissioner’s Road Safety Fund will initially support 11 projects across the county – a mix of prevention, education and enforcement activities
And the funding will also allow Warwickshire to be one of the few areas of the country to provide dedicated, one-to-one, specialist support for the families of road death victims, to help them cope and recover from the devastating effects of the loss of a loved one.
In total, bids worth £329,000 are being awarded in this first tranche of funding. The 11 projects are:
* Brake – Youth for Brake Project (£19,690): National road safety charity Brake will work with secondary school pupils aged 12-15 to help them become inspiring leaders in road safety.
* Brake – Independent Road Bereavement Advocate Project (£71,907): To provide local, specialist, one-to-one support in Warwickshire for bereaved families. The award also will provide a contribution for Brake’s National Helpline.
* Video Biker (£50,000): A motorcycle safety/training collaboration allowing learner riders to enhance their training by utilising ‘free-of-charge’ modern, online educational resources.
* The Honest Truth and First Car (£77,660): Providing targeted road safety information for 17 to 24-year-old learner drivers during lessons with approved driving instructors.
* Under 17 Car Club – Pathfinder Initiative (£10,810): To part fund the teaching of some 50 under-17s to drive in a safe environment before receiving their provisional licences, encouraging future safe and responsible driving.
* Warwickshire Police – Child Car Seat Safety Scheme (£1,980): To train 12 Warwickshire Police staff to nationally accredited standards in checking and educating on child car seat safety.
* Warwickshire County Council – Bike “Recycle Scheme (£8,913): Allowing selected young people to “upcycle” an old bicycle in youth work sessions. Once roadworthy, the young person uses the bike to take part in a series of road safety courses.
* RoSPA – Become a Safer Rider Courses (£7,000): Expansion of existing rider safety training initiatives to encourage safe road use by motorcyclists.
* North Warwickshire Borough Council – Community Speed Watch (£20,872): To contribute towards the provision of additional speed monitoring devices and signage for local community speed watch groups.
* Warwickshire Police – TruCam (£20,000): For the purchase of new hand-held speed detection and recording equipment.
* British Horse Society – Interactive Video (£40,420): The creation of an interactive road safety feature video aimed at young people in schools, which would involve viewers making choices to influence the outcome of the film.
Mr Seccombe added: “The schemes I am supporting are all innovative and help to enhance the work that is already ongoing within the county. I’m really excited to see how they begin to make a real difference over the coming months, helping to raise the profile of road safety much more widely across Warwickshire.
“In the meantime I am also continuing to ensure that the response of the police, local authorities and other road safety partners is joined up and effective, so that there is a full package of measures on offer across the county including enforcement, education and engineering.”