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Drivers in country road safety warning

Driving beyond safe boundaries on countryside roads can have fatal consequences, as was demonstrated in this mock-up of a serious road accident, part of a Real Time Crash Scenario held in Rothesay in June 2012.

Driving beyond safe boundaries on countryside roads can have fatal consequences, as was demonstrated in this mock-up of a serious road accident, part of a Real Time Crash Scenario held in Rothesay in June 2012.

Drivers are being urged to slow down on country roads on Bute, and across Scotland, this summer after almost one in three Scottish drivers admitted driving too fast on country roads.

A survey carried out by road safety charity Brake and Digby Brown solicitors revealed that 32 per cent of Scottish drivers have admitted driving unsafely on country roads by speeding, taking bends fast or overtaking.

Almost four in ten - 38 per cent - have had a near miss on country roads while driving, walking or cycling.

Official statistics show that car occupants are almost twice as likely to be killed on a country road than an urban road, motorcyclists more than twice as likely, and cyclists more than three times as likely.

The survey also found:

- One in five (18%) admit breaking speed limits on country roads in the past year

- Three in 20 (15%) admit taking corners or brows too fast

- One in 20 (6%) admit overtaking when it isn’t safe

- One in four (25%) have been a passenger with a driver who broke the limit, one in six (17%) with a driver who took corners or brows too fast, and one in 14 (7%) with a driver who overtook when it wasn’t safe.

- Four in five (80%) think traffic is too fast for safety on some or most rural roads.

Julie Townsend, deputy chief executive, Brake, said: “We hear constantly from people in rural areas whose communities are blighted by fast traffic. It’s a big issue over the summer when many people want to enjoy our beautiful countryside on foot, bike or horseback, and shouldn’t have to contend with drivers treating the roads as their personal racetrack.

“Driving in this way is incredibly selfish and means people feel less able to get out and enjoy the countryside. People in rural communities and families visiting these areas this summer have a right to enjoy their surroundings without fearing for their safety.

“Country roads are not empty thoroughfares for traffic; they are living environments, full of unpredictable hazards around every twist and turn. We are urging drivers to slow right down on country roads this summer, especially for villages, bends, brows and bad weather, to respect the countryside and other people’s right to enjoy it.”

 

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