A bold two-year action plan has been published by the government in a bid to improve the safety of vulnerable road users in the UK.
The action plan sees 50 proposed new measures put forward to help combat road rage and to encourage mutual respect between road users. One of the new measures includes creating a new, bespoke back office unit for police to analyse video evidence submitted by the public.
This measure builds on the success of Operation Snap – a successful programme first piloted by North Wales Police in 2016 – and will allow police to handle video and photographic evidence submitted via dash cams.
Off the back of the plan, councils will be given powers to tackle dangerous parking in mandatory cycle lanes. Councils will also be encouraged to spend 15% of their local transport infrastructure funding on walking and cycling.
Joshua Harris, director of campaigns at Brake, the road safety charity, said:
“People who choose to cycle or walk should be able to do so in a safe and welcoming environment; active travel is not only great for personal health but public health too. With cyclists and pedestrians among the most vulnerable on our roads, safety, and the perceptions of safety, need to be addressed to encourage more people to leave their cars at home and get active. We welcome the government’s action plan, which couldn’t be more timely as people across the country are encouraged to be more #BikeSmart for national Road Safety Week.”
The action plan has also suggested insurance companies could provide a discount to road users who have passed the Department for Transport’s Bikeability cycle training course.
The government announced that it would review guidance in the Highway Code on how road users should behave in relation to cyclists and pedestrians, as well as other vulnerable road users. The review will be conducted in consultation with all key stakeholders, including those representing equestrians.