Published July 18, 2017 at 15:05
A new road safety plan for Blackburn and Darwen aimed to cut deaths and injuries was officially launched at Blackburn Fire Station yesterday.
Sadly, around 65 children are killed or seriously injured across Lancashire, Blackburn with Darwen and Blackpool every year, many of which are preventable.
The multi-agency partnership approach to tackling road safety is part of a wider strategy for Lancashire – known as ‘Toward Zero’ which is being driven by the Pennine Lancashire & Lancashire Road Safety Partnership.
The Plan itself covers the full range of responses with education, enforcement and engineering all key features delivered in response to in depth analysis.
Blackburn with Darwen Council leader Cllr Mohammed Khan said:
I am delighted to launch the borough’s road safety plan, as our contribution to the wider Pennine and Lancashire Toward Zero Partnership approach. The Council is absolutely committed to reducing the number of people killed or injured on our roads. We have invested in programmes to raise awareness of the importance of road safety, we have used our enforcement powers innovatively and we have invested in schemes which improve the layout of roads to make them safer, we’ve done this amongst other initiatives and partnership campaigns as we continue to accelerate our programme to reduce deaths and serious injuries on our roads.
When such tragedies occur they have a huge, devastating impact not just on families but also on the wider community.
At the heart of this plan is partnership working. The Council cannot make the roads safer on its own. We must co-ordinate our efforts and work together to achieve our aims and everyone has a role to reduce the number of incidents on our roads and make our roads safer for all road users.
Neil Hardiman, Lancashire Fire and Rescue’s Delivery Manager, who is leading on a new education programme for school children said:
This multi-agency accident prevention plan has been developed to prevent the harms caused by accidents, not just in Blackburn with Darwen but across Pennine and Lancashire. We want children to be aware of the dangers to empower them and keep them safe.
Although casualty numbers have been reducing over recent years, any accident is one too many.
The Road Safety Partnership, which includes representatives from Lancashire Police, Lancashire County Council, Blackburn with Darwen Borough Council, Blackpool Council, Lancashire Fire and Rescue Service, Highways England and the Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner, has introduced a number of initiatives to help tackle the issue including average speed cameras in hotspot areas.
Lancashire Constabulary’s Assistant Chief Constable Tim Jacques, Chair of the Lancashire Road Safety Partnership, said:
Our aim is to prevent deaths and life changing injuries through road collisions.
It is well researched and documented that speeding can kill, but we know that a combination of education, engineering and enforcement can change behaviours and save lives. This is particularly important where there are recurring problems.
The Partnership vision, ‘Towards Zero’, is that we work towards preventing all collisions that result in death or serious injury. Using initiatives such as clearly signed average speed cameras on our most dangerous stretches of road will play a vital role as part of this vision.