‘Hugger’ encourages road users to look out for P2W riders
A campaign to encourage other road users to consciously look out for motorcyclists has been running across Essex during the summer period and is now drawing to a close.
Statistics published recently by the Safer Essex Roads Partnership (SERP) show that while motorcycles comprise around 0.6% of traffic by vehicle miles, their riders make up 26% of killed and seriously injured (KSI) casualties. What’s more, 31% of all injuries to motorcyclists in the SERP area (Essex, Southend-On-Sea and Thurrock) in the past 18 months were KSIs.
However, SERP data also shows that often the P2W rider is not at fault; in P2W collisions involving other vehicles, 61% were deemed to be the fault of the other vehicle and not the P2W rider.
The three most common faults attributed to other road users involved in P2W collisions are: failing to look properly; misjudging the P2W rider’s path; and misjudging the P2W rider’s speed.
Andy Stroulger, SERP’s motorcycling specialist, said: “SERP is involved in a number of activities and campaigns directed at P2W riders, but to date there has been little focus on educating other road users to look out for motorcycles.
“That’s why we developed this campaign in order to raise awareness of the presence of P2W riders among other road users.”
The campaign was targeted in the areas where P2W collisions are most prevalent: Basildon, Braintree, Chelmsford, Colchester, Epping Forest and Southend-On-Sea.
Using the straplines “Are you looking out for me?” and “Only just spotted me?”, the campaign features the familiar ‘Hugger’ character which was first developed in Norfolk and introduced in Essex last year. The name ‘Hugger’ comes from a certain type of motorcycle rear mudguard.
The campaign comprised bus back and radio advertising and posters in washrooms across the county. It also featured at a series of community engagement days and other events across the SERP area, and ran across SERP partners’ social media channels including Facebook and Twitter.