Road safety

IAM RoadSmart, a charity dedicated to reducing the number of people killed and seriously injured on the roads, is involved in lobbying for improvements in road safety standards and leading the road safety debate with central government and within the motoring community. IAM RoadSmart is an advocate for lifelong personal development of driving and riding skills.

Road Safety infographic

IAM RoadSmart analyses multiple issues and viewpoints when considering ways to improve road safety, not least those of its, 92,000 members. Human factors are one of these – how the driver (or rider) interacts with the journey, the vehicle and the external world – as highlighted by the 2016 government report on road casualties: “All accidents have a cause and that cause is often someone making a mistake or exhibiting dangerous or thoughtless road behaviour”.

The 2017 IAM RoadSmart Safety Culture Index, a study of UK motorists’ attitudes towards driving. The report highlighted that the main areas of concern amongst motorists (who took part in the survey), included: Using a mobile phone whilst driving, aggressive driving and drug driving.

IAM RoadSmart Human Factors

Whilst the UK has seen massive reductions in the number of people killed and seriously injured on the roads over the decades, that figure has plateaued at  just over 1,700 in recent years (reported road fatalities were 1,792 in 2016, 1,732 in 2015, 1,775 in 2014 and 1,713 in 2013. Reported serious injuries were 24,101 in 2016, 22,137 in 2015, 22,801 in 2014 and 21,657 in 2013).

Added to this, we are less than two decades away from driverless cars becoming popular on our roads. An important area of consideration is how driverless cars will exist on the roads alongside conventionally driven vehicles. What is certain is that the debate will not disappear as technology plays a bigger role in our motoring lives, and IAM RoadSmart will continue to play a central role in it.

IAM RoadSmart’s director of policy and research, Neil Greig, said: “Five years of flat lining road deaths is unacceptable. The huge gains in road safety made in the past now seem a distant memory. The government must show more leadership to really drive down road deaths in the future.”

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Tips

Don’t let a puncture leave you tyred!

Blog post posted on 01/05/18 |
Advice

Sometimes the roads we drive on can be unpredictable which can lead to a puncture. This could mean cancelling our plans and waiting in a safe place for the breakdown recovery team.

But we could soon be on our way if we were able to change the tyre ourselves. Richard Gladman, IAM RoadSmart’s head of driving and riding standards, provides some useful advice on how to change a tyre. 

  • If it is possible, pull off the road to a safe area. If you have to stop on a road, place your warning triangle at least 45 metres behind your vehicle, but not on a motorway. Activate your hazard warning lights to warn other traffic. Raising the bonnet or hatchback will help other traffic realise you have an issue. If you have a passenger, get then to act as spotter and warn you of approaching traffic
  • A level hard standing will be best as soft ground will not allow the jack to be used correctly. If the ground is not suitable you may need assistance from a professional
  • Locate the jack and wheel brace, it may help if you do this during your weekly vehicle checks so you know where it is and how to release it. This is also a good time to locate the jacking points and find out how the jack works. Often the kit will have a wheel chock; use this on the other axle of the vehicle to assist keep it still
  • Loosen the wheel nuts slightly before you start jacking the car up, the vehicle will be unstable after you raise it and you will not be able to get as much leverage. Remember one of the nuts is likely to have a lock function and will require the unique key
  • When jacking the vehicle you will need it to be raised high enough to fit the new tyre (this will be higher than required to remove the old). Wear gloves when handling the old tyre, if it has punctured it is likely to have sharp steel protruding from it
  • Tighten the wheel nuts until the wheel sits squarely on the hub and then lower the jack. Further tighten the wheel nuts with the vehicle stable. You will need to get the wheel nuts checked for tightness by a professional (when you repair or replace the punctured tyre). If fitting a space saver spare, remember the restrictions that imposes i.e. no more than 50mph (80kph) and should be used to get you to a place of repair - not as a substitute for the correct tyre
  • Avoid changing your wheels on the hard shoulder of a motorway. If you have a puncture on a motorway, use the emergency phones to contact the motorway control room and they will send assistance to protect the area if required. Or arrange for your breakdown recovery organisation to assist you

Richard said: “Punctures are much rarer these days but the risk associated with conducting a tyre change has increased with the volume of traffic. Safety has to be your main concern but if you cannot get to a safe area to make the change; get the vehicle off the road and call for assistance. A vehicle recovery service will have access to professional equipment which will allow a much speedier repair to be conducted. If you are in any doubt, call for help.”

ENDS

Notes to editors:

1.      Richard Gladman is IAM RoadSmart’s head of driving and riding standards.

2.      IAM RoadSmart has a mission to make better drivers and riders in order to improve road safety, inspire confidence and make driving and riding enjoyable. It does this through a range of courses for all road users, from online assessments through to the advanced driving and riding tests. IAM RoadSmart is the trading name of all businesses operated by the UK’s largest road safety charity, the Institute of Advanced Motorists (IAM) and was formed in April 2016 combining the IAM, IAM Drive & Survive, PDS and IAM Driver Retraining Academy. The organisation has 92,000 members and campaigns on road safety on their behalf. At any one time there are over 7,000 drivers and riders actively engaged with IAM RoadSmart’s courses, from members of the public to company drivers, while our Driver Retraining Academy has helped 2,500 drivers to shorten their bans through education and support programmes.

To find out more about IAM RoadSmart products and services visit the new website www.iamroadsmart.com

To find out the name of your own local IAM RoadSmart group please visit: https://www.iamroadsmart.com/local-groups

Media contacts:

Further information from:

IAM RoadSmart press office – 020 8996 9777 

press.office@iam.org.uk / www.iamroadsmart.com

ISDN broadcast lines available

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On Facebook: www.facebook.com/IAMRoadSmart

On Twitter: @IAMRoadSmart