Road Safety Week begins today and is a timely reminder to keep your focus on the road.

An initiative of the road safety charity Brake, and supported by government agencies, Road Safety Week runs from 19-26 May. This year’s theme is ‘Tune in to road safety.

Talking with passengers, eating and drinking, reaching or searching for objects in the vehicle are some of the potential hazardous distractions that drivers contend with. Another common distraction is mobile phones.

“Using your mobile phone in the car is not only a distraction, but illegal,” Leo Mortimer, Manager Land Transport Safety, Ministry of Transport says.

“Staying safe on the road requires concentration, so it’s important to keep distractions to a minimum.

“Keeping your eyes on the road and remaining focussed on the driving task is something all drivers must do. Friends and family can also help by not distracting drivers – either in the car, or on the phone.”

Drivers are not the only road users to be affected by diverted attention. In the five years from 2008-2012, 79 cyclists and 8 pedestrians were involved in crashes where their attention was diverted. One cyclist and four pedestrians died.

“Road Safety Week asks everyone – pedestrians, cyclists, motorcyclists and drivers – to give their full focus to using the road.

“The Ministry fully supports community initiatives such as Road Safety Week. By all working together, we will help make the roads safer for everyone,” Mr Mortimer says.

Read the Associate Transport Minister’s media release(external link) in support of Road Safety Week on the Beehive website.

Read the latest fact sheet on crashes involving diverted attention

More information about Road Safety Week(external link)

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