Road Safety at Work

For most of us, driving is the most dangerous activity we do.

Have you ever considered your driving attitude?

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Road safety is important, and it affects everyone. And how you drive, can affect everyone else on the road. Whilst driving do you ever display any (or a mix) of the styles below?

  • The Teacher: needs to make sure other drivers know what they have done wrong and expects recognition of his/her efforts to teach others.
  • The Know-it-all: thinks he/she is surrounded by incompetent fools and contents themselves with shouting condescendingly at other drivers while being protected in their own car.
  • The Competitor: needs to get ahead of all other drivers and is annoyed when someone gets in the way of that. He/she might accelerate when someone tries to overtake them or close a gap to prevent anyone from getting in front of them.
  • The Punisher: wants to punish other drivers for any perceived misbehaviour. Might end up getting out of his/her car or approaching other drivers directly.
  • The Philosopher: accepts misbehaviour easily and tries to rationally explain it. Manages to control his/her feelings in the car.
  • The Avoider: treats misbehaving other drivers impersonally, dismisses them as a hazard.
  • The Escapee: listens to music or talks on the phone to insulate him/herself. Escapees distract themselves with selected social relationships so that they do not have to relate to any of the other drivers on the road. It’s also a strategy for not getting frustrated in the first place.

Most of us display some of the above on a typical journey. Consider how this can affect other road users – and which attitude do you think we should have most of the time? (the Philosopher!)

We looked at data from the most recent 5 year period, of every collision along the A30 just in Cornwall, and the results were unexpected.

Nearly 80% of collisions along the A30 occurred during perfect ('Fine without high winds') weather conditions.

'Rain without wind' conditions accounted for just over 10%, but those bad driving conditions which most people would expect: snow, high winds, fog or mist together only account for the last 10%.

Think how you drive in poor weather conditions: allow a bigger gap between vehicles, pay more attention, slow down, lights on, perhaps turn the radio off?

And in perfect conditions? Especially a route you drive often (e.g. your commute) do you: forget driving a part of your route, go on autopilot, think about what you’ll be doing at work/at home? We relax and get distracted, this could be why we get more RTCs.

Consider your attitude and behaviour when driving – if you get worked up over something, will it resolve anything? If you don’t let that driver merge in front of you, will it really make a difference to your arrival time? And if you get a bit of road rage, that stays with you for a long time, and will cause over drivers to feel that way too.

When driving, and you’re feeling perfectly safe and relaxed, remember this is when you’re most vulnerable. Keep checking those mirrors, and looking ahead – failure to look properly is the number one cause of crashes in Cornwall.

Have a look at our most recent Work Place Road Safety Newsletter. Don’t forget to check out our Driving Tips and Advice pages.

Cornwall Fire, Rescue and Community Safety Services Prevention and Road Safety team deliver road safety workshops targeting the above messages and more, in a fully interactive, non-powerpoint, workshop at your venue. If you’d like more information on that please contact us using the contact details on this page.