First cyclist safety TV advert launched

First cyclist safety TV advert launched

The first ever television campaign targeting cyclist's safety launched on Friday evening.

The Department of the Environment campaign, called "Don't Forget", debuted on television after UTV Live.In the 10 year period between 2002 and 2012, the number of cyclists seriously injured on roads in Northern Ireland almost doubled, while the overall number of serious road traffic casualties declined by fifty per cent over the same period.Between 2008 and 2012, six cyclists died on the region's roads, while in 2013 four died and 42 were seriously injured.So far this year there have been 18 road deaths, compared to 16 for the same period last year and eight in 2012.The campaign will run until after the Giro d'Italia 2014 cycle race in May and will be supported by online and outdoor activity.Environment Minister Mark Durkan said: "The aim of the new campaign is to reduce road deaths and serious injuries involving cyclists by positively influencing the relationship between cyclists and drivers, supported by the message 'Respect Everyone's Journey.'""For many reasons, we have seen an increase in cycling here over the last number of years and the concept of 'Sharing the Road' has therefore never been more important. If we are to drive down road casualties down further, we must all take personal responsibility for our behaviour on the road, whatever type of road user we are.""Cycling is much riskier than either walking or travelling by car. Based on miles travelled, cyclists are 23 times more likely to be killed or seriously injured than car users," the SDLP minister said."This campaign will encourage cyclists and drivers to engage with each other emotionally and help them understand each other's perspective, so that they respect each other's journey."Transport Minister Danny Kennedy said: "It is clear that cycling is growing in popularity in Northern Ireland and my aim is to create a safe and accessible cycling infrastructure for everyone in Northern Ireland."This advertisement helps to further increase awareness amongst all road users to travel safely and respect one another," the UUP minister added.Head of Roads Policing, Superintendent Gerry Murray issued an appeal to all road users to "exercise some common sense, goodwill and respect everyone's journey."He added: "Unfortunately, many of my colleagues have experience of attending incidents involving cyclists. No matter who is at fault in a collision between a bicycle and a vehicle, it's always the cyclist who bears the brunt of any impact."

© UTV

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