Road Safety News
 

TT safety campaign launched

Monday 25th May 2009

The TT 2009 road safety campaign, 'Stay Alive, Stay Alert', was launched last week.

The campaign illustrates the consequences and aftermath of a serious road accident. All but one of the images are genuine accident scenes from previous TT festivals. The poster, featuring a deceased rider with a yellow motorbike, was staged with actors but based on police photographic records and using a real crash bike.

David Anderson, minister for transport, said: “Although some of the images may be difficult to look at, we feel that it is important for people to see real accidents scenes and how a split second can affect lives so dramatically.

“The aim of this campaign is to discourage reckless riding and driving by changing public attitude towards road safety. Ultimately, we want to prevent accidents like these happening again.”

Click here to read the full Isle of Man news release.

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The photograph was similar to that of my son who was the innocent victim of a hit and run, although I barly glanced at it. But what compounded my distress is the use of the insulting, offensive, misleading term 'accident'. please read the following,which is my Brief on the use of terminology.

Briefing (1/gen)
Road Traffic Crashes should and must not be referred to as ‘accidents’.

The correct use of terminology is absolutely vital in influencing attitudes towards Road Traffic Crashes and the carnage and devastation caused.

We all have a duty and responsibility not to use slogans, terminology or language which is inappropriate, incorrect or misleading or causes distress or offence.

I realise that the public will not have any idea that the two words/terms deeply distressing and deeply offensive to the bereaved parents and families of innocent road crash victims are – ‘road traffic accident’ and ‘accidental death’. Both of which, as well as being deeply distressing and deeply offensive, are inappropriate and are grossly misleading and compounds the overwhelming grief, devastation and trauma of the bereaved.
(We refer to the term ‘accident’ as the ‘A’ word)

I cannot express strongly enough how distressed and offended we feel when we hear word/term ‘accident’ (the ‘A’ word) when referring to Road Traffic Crashes. It is making the assumption that it was without apparent cause, which is grossly misleading. The word/term ‘accident’ (in this context) is in fact incorrect, inappropriate, grossly misleading, and it is insulting, deeply insensitive, deeply offensive, deeply distressing. It is belittling the trauma and devastation suffered by families of Innocent loved ones horrifically and violently killed in Road Traffic Crashes in an unprovoked attack of Road Violence by another road user who used their vehicle as a lethal weapon whilst committing one or more criminal offences and Playing Russian Roulette with the lives of innocent men, women and children.

How can it be appropriate to use the same word to describe an event, which has caused horrific injuries or horrific, brutal, violent death and utter devastation, as that when someone has spilt milk’ – or as that when children wet themselves and are told, – there, there, never mind it is only an ‘accident’?

By using the term ’Road Traffic Crash or Incident’ – it is not used to apportion blame, but rather states a fact and may be used in all cases regardless of who is at fault or how the Crash/Incident occurred and would give proper meaning and respect especially to the innocent victims killed and injured. And would relieve a little of the Trauma, which affects the health and well-being of so many bereaved parents and families of Innocent Victims of Road Violence.
The Emergency Services use (RTC/RTI). Road Traffic Crash/Collision/Incident

The Terminology 'accident' trivialises the enormity of a Road CRASH in every sense and is extremely detrimental to the commission of raising awareness about Road Safety and in changing attitudes towards safe driving.

Road Traffic Crashes are lumped in the travel section and trivialised as an inconvenience to other road users and holding up traffic. If Road Traffic Crashes were given the same respect, importance and consideration as other crimes against the person, and as that of Rail Crashes and Air Crashes, the public would be informed immediately that the crash had occurred, of causalities and kept updated, as we should when people have been killed or injured in horrific, violent and brutal circumstances. If Road Traffic Crashes were treated in this way, we might begin to make people change their dangerous, intimidating criminal driving behaviour.

Road Deaths of innocent men, women and children in a random unprovoked attack of Road Violence by another road user who used their vehicle as a lethal weapon whilst committing one or more criminal offences and Playing Russian Roulette with the lives of people going about their daily lives. This is worst type of Road Violence and as such should be treated as that of Gun and Knife Violence, as all are Violent Crimes Against the Person.

How can a Civilised Society stand by and do nothing to address the horrific, brutal, violent deaths of innocent men, women and children – who are slaughtered in an unprovoked act of Road Violence by other road users? – How can a Civilised Society treat the killing of innocent people on the roads less than the killing of innocent people in other circumstances? This is Institutionalised Discrimination, a Violation of Equality and of Human Rights.

PLEASE NOTE – The Driving Standard Agency has decided to remove the incorrect and misleading term 'accident' from the Highway Code and replace it with 'Collision’, ‘Crash’ or ‘Incident’. So too, has the CPS and the CJS. The Norfolk Constabulary will be using the term COLLISION on their new design ‘Witness Appeal Boards’ deployed to road death scenes. – The decision by William Armstrong, Coroner for Norfolk, to stop using the terms ‘road traffic accident’ and ‘accidental death’ is very much welcomed by bereaved families of Innocent Road Crash Victims.

Bridget M J Wall – Founder of Families Against Road Violence –
Bridget Wall - Norfolk

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