Solihull Council has won a Prince Michael International Road Safety Award for its ‘How Safe Are You?’ campaign, a behaviour change programme aimed at Year 7 pupils travelling to secondary school for the first time.
Prince Michael Awards are presented to individuals, companies or organisations in recognition of their outstanding contribution to road safety.
As part of How Safe Are You?, Solihull’s road safety team used a behavioural psychologist to gain techniques to work with pupils in their first year of senior school who are often used to being taken to primary school by their parents, but now travel alone or with friends for the first time.
The campaign encourages youngsters to make eye contact with drivers before they step into a road. It is also designed to change pupils’ perceptions that drivers are always responsible for pedestrian accidents, and that they always notice pedestrians and cyclists.
The West Midlands Road Safety Group has now offered the campaign to some of the region’s other metropolitan districts including Birmingham, Coventry, Sandwell, Walsall and Wolverhampton.
Councillor Joe Tildesley, the mayor of Solihull, collected the award on behalf of the council from Adrian Walsh, director of RoadSafe, the organisation behind the awards.
Councillor Tildesley said: “I am incredibly proud to receive such a prestigious award on behalf of the borough.
“This campaign stands out against the often-used shock tactics for road safety campaigns, and just shows that targeting the behaviour of young pupil can have a lasting positive effect. The young people who have been involved in this programme are now behaving in a much safer manner when travelling to and from school, which is absolutely wonderful.”