IAM RoadSmart has launched a new campaign to celebrate and promote ‘courtesy’ between drivers, riders and other road users.
‘Thumbs Up For Great Driving And Riding!’ is running throughout August and encourages the road using public to show their appreciation for courteous driving behaviour – such as thanking a driver for giving way – with a simple thumbs up.
Throughout August, IAM RoadSmart staff and volunteers will be watching out for good deeds committed by drivers and riders and handing out thousands of stickers in support of the campaign.
The charity is also asking drivers and motorcyclists to get involved with the campaign by sharing their own positive driving and riding experiences on social media using the hashtag #ThumbsUpForGreatDriving or #ThumbsUpForGreatRiding.
The campaign is supported by 1992 Formula One champion Nigel Mansell CBE.
Nigel Mansell said: “Nowadays it sometimes feels like courtesy on our roads is in rather short supply – and it’s about time that good driving is rewarded.
“I am wholly in favour of ‘Thumbs Up For Great Driving And Riding’ month – anything that leaves a smile on the face after a journey is a good idea to me.”
The initiative was launched yesterday (1 August) with a ‘Thunderclap’ campaign – a crowdspeaking platform that broadcasts a specific message onto social media.
The Thunderclap message, which was published at 7am on 1 August, reads: “Give a ‘Thumbs Up!’ this August to celebrate and encourage courtesy between drivers, riders and other road users.”
The Thunderclap had 192 supporters – including the Road Safety GB Twitter feed – equating to a social reach of more than 339k users.
IAM RoadSmart says with more vehicles on the roads, worsening congestion and increasing distraction from mobile phones and other technologies – politeness and courtesy between road users has become less commonplace.
The campaign is also backed by IAM RoadSmart ambassadors Paddy Hopkirk OBE, winner of the Monte Carlo and Acropolis rallies, and Maria Costello MBE – the first woman to claim a podium at the Isle of Man Classic TT.
Maria Costello MBE said: “It really is a shame to see conflict on the road escalate so fast, when all it takes is for one party to back down and diffuse the situation.
“We urge everyone out there to be the ‘bigger man or woman’ and take the first step towards promoting courtesy between road users as the norm and not the exception.”
Paddy Hopkirk OBE said: “I’ve been driving for more than six decades and being thanked or thanking someone changes the whole tone of a journey.
“Let’s just make all our lives that much more cheerful by giving the thumbs up where it’s deserved and moving on with a smile.”