Innovative road safety campaign launched in Cambridgeshire

A new initiative is being launched in Cambridgeshire to help reduce collisions on the county’s roads.

Project Pictogram was officially launched this week as part of Road Safety Week. Cambridgeshire Fire and Rescue Service together with Cambridgeshire Constabulary drove the concept forward through the Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Road Safety Partnership.

The initiative, which was first implemented by Hampshire Fire and Rescue Service, sees vehicles from both organisations displaying safety information, in the form of circular pictograms, to inform motorists of the fatal four factors involved in the majority of serious collisions. These include:

  • Inappropriate speed
  • Driver distractions – most commonly mobile phones
  • Lack of a seat belt
  • Alcohol or drug impairment

Fire and police officers have been working with businesses from across the county to provide the pictogram artwork to display on their fleet of vehicles. The artwork includes the Fatal Four, as well as highlighting the need to keep a safe distance, e.g. two seconds away, from the vehicle in front.

Area Commander Chris Parker, in charge of community fire safety at CFRS, said: “Making our roads safer to travel on is a key element of our community safety activity. We work alongside colleagues from the police, county councils, the Highways Agency and others to take a collaborative approach towards reducing the number of people killed or seriously injured on our roads.

“Despite our best efforts the challenge is increasing, so we are looking at more innovative ways to help reduce the amount of collisions we see on our road network. Project Pictogram is one of these innovative ideas.

“Working with local businesses that have vehicles travelling regularly across the county allows us to spread these important safety messages to motorists. Seeing these pictograms will hopefully lead them to think about changing their behaviour and drive that little bit safer.”

Police Constable Jon Morris, casualty reduction officer at Cambridgeshire Constabulary, said: “One of the most difficult things a police officer has to do is pass the terrible news to someone that a loved one has died in a road traffic collision. All too often these collisions occur on the roads we all share, regardless of the nature of our journey. 

“The safety of road users is something very close to my heart, having supported so many families over a number of years, who have suffered a tragic loss in a traffic collision. This initiative demonstrates how all different road user communities can come together, with a common objective, to reduce the number of casualties on our roads and make everyone’s journey safer.”

Chairman of Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Fire Authority Kevin Reynolds added: “Addressing the safety of the county’s road network is a key challenge we face as a service over the coming years. The only way we can really make a difference is by taking a partnership approach to ensure we can spread safety messages far and wide.

“Working with the local businesses to build the awareness of Project Pictogram will hopefully see motorists think about their driving habits and adopt a safer approach to help save lives.

“The Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Road Safety Partnership will continue its proactive and innovative approach to making the county’s roads safer.”

Magpas Air Ambulance hosted the launch event at their operations base near RAF Wyton. Organisations from across the county attended the launch and will be supporting the project by displaying the pictogram stickers on their respective fleets.

Magpas Air Ambulance Dr Nathan Howes said: “At Magpas Air Ambulance, we would never wish for anyone to be involved in a road traffic accident. However, if they are, thanks to public support we can continue to deliver the highest level of pre-hospital emergency medical care to them, in their ultimate time of need. Today is an inspirational and educational example of how we can collectively reach out to members of the community, prevent accidents and stop the next generation of drivers from dying on our roads.”

The concept was originally designed by Hampshire Fire and Rescue Service and was successfully introduced in June 2016.

For more information please visit the Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Road Safety Partnership website: