Road safety is paramount and should be central to every journey made – no matter what the mode of transport.
That’s the message as a joint emergency services and road user groups campaign launches today.
With Phase Five of lockdown now underway, the roads will become considerably busier than they have been. With more traffic, it is vital everyone ensures they are using the roads in a safe manner.
A range of organisations are supporting the campaign and statements from each are included below. Roads Policing Inspector Tom Marshall said:
“Roads are a shared resource there for us all to get from point A to point B using our preferred method of transport. As we return to normal, that mindset of sharing and mutual respect is one we need to remember. We worked so hard as a community in tackling the pandemic, let’s work equally as hard to stay safe on the roads. That’s why we’ve been speaking to road user groups of all backgrounds. Because whether you walk, cycle or drive, you have a responsibility to behave in a safe and responsible manner.
“We are asking everyone to engage that fantastic Guernsey Together spirit into their habits when on the roads – you owe it to everyone to do so. Be polite, be respectful, be courteous but above all be safe, and we can avoid any tragedies out there. Thank you.”
Guernsey Velo Club president Mark Smith said:
“Guernsey Velo Club promotes safe and responsible cycling to all of our members, we ask our members to recognise that all road users should be treated with respect in order to receive respect whilst on the road.
“We encourage our members to ride with consideration for other road users, whether pedestrians, horse riders or motorists and always give more vulnerable users as much room as they would expect themselves. The Covid 19 situation encouraged the community to maintain social distancing of 1 to 2 metres. We would ask that fellow road users give cyclists at least 1.5m when overtaking and to recognise the roads are a shared space for all of us to use safely.”
Guernsey Bicycle Group chairperson Sam Field said:
“Guernsey Bicycle Group encourages everyone to share our roads with care and responsibility. It doesn’t matter if you’re on a bike, on foot, on a bus, a motorbike or in a car, van or a truck, please treat everyone with care, patience and respect on our limited space roads. Basically, treat others as you would like them to treat you. Take care, ride safely and be kind.”
Guernsey Motor Trades Association President Robert Cornelius said:
“As we have moved out of the Covid-19 lockdown in Guernsey it has been noticeable that the roads have got much busier again as we move through each phase, with this in mind the GMTA would like to encourage all forms of transportation to be aware of the increase and consider all road users and pedestrians when moving around the Island. What we believe was noticeable in the lockdown period was the pace and courtesy that everyone showed when using the roads, whether you were a pedestrian, cyclist or vehicle driver, moving forward and as businesses get back to a new normal we hope that everyone can adjust accordingly and be more considerate when using the roads in Guernsey in the future.
Guernsey Rouleurs Cycling Club Secretary Mandy Hardman said:
“The Guernsey Rouleurs Cycling Club is made up of mixed ability, non-competitive cyclists who all share the love of cycling as a means to stay fit and healthy. The Club promotes a strict cycling etiquette which is designed to protect both members and other road users alike. Our aim is to keep different ability group rides to safe and sensible manageable numbers with a view to causing the least amount of disruption to other road users, be they cyclists, motorists, horse riders or pedestrians.
“We have been greatly encouraged by the increased interest shown towards cycling since the start of the lockdown and beyond and ask everybody to be mindful of the dangers when overtaking, approaching yellow lines and blind bends, cyclists do not benefit from a vehicle as armour and are most likely to come off worst if a collision or crash of any kind occurs. This is a small Island and the infrastructure can become congested – let us please remember this and show courtesy and patience to one another to make our road trips a more pleasant experience for us all.”
St John Emergency Ambulance Paramedic, Dean Robilliard said:
“Lots of us have been enjoying walking and cycling during lockdown – including me! As we return to a new normal we’re likely to see more cars on the road, but a lot of people will still want to walk and cycle. So we all have a responsibility to share Guernsey’s roads safely. Along with the other emergency services and ‘road user’ groups we’re asking everyone, whether you’re a car driver, a van driver, motorbike rider, a cyclist or a pedestrian to show respect and courtesy for each other – think about each other. Be patient, be aware, be polite – but most of all stay safe!”
Living Streets Secretary Pat Wisher said:
“We all have something in common - we all need to make journeys - to work, to shop, to visit friends and relatives, and for leisure activities. To make those journeys we need to share the spaces on our roads with other road users - car drivers, commercial vehicles, cyclists, bus users, pedestrians and horse riders. To travel safely to our destinations we all need to respect and be courteous to the needs of those other road users. Together we can then avoid unnecessary accidents.”
Senior Traffic Services Officer Mark Brockway said:
“During the lockdown, this island has drawn together to keep each other safe, like no other time since the occupation. Many of us have taken the opportunity to take advantage of quieter roads, to walk, cycle and enjoy our island in safety. Now that the island goes through the final stages of releasing from lockdown and life returns to ‘normal’, let’s all do what we can to keep the island’s roads as safe as possible for everyone. Slowing down, driving with extra care and being aware of other road users, helps keep us all safe. In particular, with more school children cycling and walking to the island’s schools, we really need to keep them safe as they make their way to and from school. So, whether you’re a driver, rider, walker or taking exercise, please use the roads safely and considerately for the benefit of everyone and let’s continue being #GuernseyTogether.”
Guernsey Fire & Rescue Service Station Officer David Hockey said:
“Many of us enjoyed empty roads during lockdown, with nothing around the corner and travelling in relative peace. Now that we have entered phase five, we’re seeing the amount of traffic returning to some form of normality with high levels of traffic movement. What we don’t want to see is a return to “normal” levels of incidents with regards to Road Traffic Collisions. It’s up to every road user, no matter how they choose to get about on the public highway to make sure they are doing so in a safe manner. The roads are there for us all to enjoy, everyone has a right to use them with an expectation they will get to their destination safely.”