Road Safety for Drivers
Ceredigion County Council is committed to raising awareness of safer driving in Ceredigion. This page provides advice on safer driving, as well as information on schemes and training initiatives organised by the Road Safety Section.
Drivers can increase their safety on Ceredigion's roads by following a number of simple steps:
- Drive at a sensible speed. Keep to the speed limits, or lower, if the situation requires extra care
- Make sure your car is kept well-maintained. Perform regular checks of the engine, tyres, brakes
- Stay away from drugs and alcohol. Drugs, even legal medication, and alcohol can severely impair your ability to drive, and could lead to a fine, prison time, or worse
- Don't answer the phone. Using a mobile phone without a hands-free kit while driving is illegal. Pull over and turn the engine off, or ignore the call. Using a hand-held phone while driving could get you 6 points on your license and a £200 fine
- Make sure everyone in the car is wearing a seatbelt
- Take extra care in severe conditions- rain, snow, ice
- Be aware of road users requiring extra care- horses, cyclists, motor bikers, pedestrians
By following this advice, drivers can help keep our roads safe.
The Council's Road Safety Section are organise campaigns/initiatives to highlight the importance of 'In Car Safety'; with qualified personnel on hand to advise parents/guardians and suggest ways of increasing their child safety in the car. All child car seats must comply with the new law (since September 2006).
What is the new law?
Children under 3 years MUST use the child restraint appropriate for their weight in any vehicle (including vans and other goods vehicle).
Rear facing baby seats MUST NOT be used in a seat protected by a frontal air bag unless the air bag has been deactivated manually or automatically.
In vehicles where seat belts are fitted, children under 3 years to 135cms in height (approx. 4ft 5 inch) MUST use the appropriate child restraint.
Three exceptions allow these children to travel in the rear and use an adult belt:
- in a taxi, if the correct restraint is not available
- for a short distance in an unexpected necessity, if the correct restraint is not available.
- where two child seats in the rear prevent the fitness of a third child seat
If you have any queries regarding 'In Car Safety' or the new child car seat law please come along to one of our campaigns/initiatives or please call the Road Safety Section - 01545 572409
The following are some of the training initiatives and schemes that Ceredigion County Council organises for drivers of all ages:
Revolutions - Young Driver Intervention
Revolutions is a hard hitting intervention which is likely to have a lasting impact on the young people attending. Revolutions is a one day Road Safety intervention delivered by MAWW Fire Service, alongside the CCC road safety team. The course is a full day event for a maximum of 12 participants between ages of 15 - 25 years old & is held in a local fire station.
An annual initiative organised for teenagers within the local Comprehensive schools, colleges and other local groups. The teenagers receive a day's training in road craft (including talks/presentations from emergency services, road safety department, DSA and numerous other agencies), hazard perception also drink/drug driving, driving related health issues and an opportunity to drive in a controlled environment with a qualified instructor.
Pre-Driver training Simulator
The Pre-Driver Simulator helps the Road Safety Officer explain typical driving dangers, scenarios and essential skills in a way that will interest its target audience. Pre/new Drivers will be able to practice handling emergency situations, vehicle malfunctions and specific manoeuvres.
The Pre/New driver through use of the simulator gains essential driving skills e.g. Clutch control and confidence in facing different driving scenarios. The simulator will be offered to all secondary schools in Ceredigion, Coleg Ceredigion and Learning Centres.
The simulators software programmes include:-
- Emergency braking scenarios
- Follow Braking
- Two second rule
- Rural and urban driving scenarios
- All weather driving scenarios
- Hazard perception
- Drink Drive scenarios
This Driver Training simulator is offered to all Year 12 pupils within every Comprehensive school in Ceredigion and each pupil will receive 30 minutes of supervised training.
The Road Safety Section in partnership with the Mid & West Wales Fire & Rescue Service have developed a Road Safety initiative that specifically addresses the concerns relating to older drivers. The presentation is aimed at drivers aged 50 and over, with a particular focus on the retired age group.
The areas covered include:
- Driver fatigue and Tiredness
- Deteriorating eye-sight
- Increased usage of prescribed drugs
- General effects of ageing
- General Road Safety issues e.g. Drink/drug driving
Eye sight testing Campaign
A campaign that targets drivers aged 30 and over, the road safety section visit various sites using the Road Safety exhibition trailer and testing eye-sight using the Driver Vision screening test.
The main objective of the campaign is to promote the importance of regular eye sight testing and making drivers that participate in the voluntary test aware that their vision perhaps is not up to standard or as good as they deem; with the expectation of those drivers receiving further and regular eye sight testing in the future.
Discover more driving techniques, hints and tips for just £20 (if you're aged between 17-25 and live in Wales). There's no test!
You'll focus on:
- Heading off on the motorway
- Driving techniques and hazard awareness
- Getting around at night
- Coping with busy towns and cities
- Driving on rural country roads
- Thinking ahead.
What do you get from it?
- Better driving skills
- More chance of lower insurance
- Less chance of a collision, or injuring yourself, friends and others.
Pass Plus Cymru is an enhanced version of the standard Pass Plus course and is supported by the Driving Standards Agency.
- It's a short expert-led higher driving course designed to develop techniques, increase awareness and widen experience
- It's available to young people in Wales for just £20 as the rest is covered by Welsh Assembly Government through grant funding to the local authorities.
- Young people are over represented in incident statistics and the Welsh Assembly Government is working with Road Safety Wales to encourage young drivers to become even better drivers with the ultimate objectives of reducing incidents and saving lives.
Look at www.dragondriver.com to book onto a course.
Courses are held in County Hall, Aberaeron on the first Monday of every month.
Road Safety for Children
Road Safety is a skill that is essential at any age, but children can be particularly vulnerable on our roads. Road Safety is often taught in Schools, and can also be taught by parents at home, through providing a good example when you travel with your children. This page details the Road Safety schemes and initiatives that are currently running in Ceredigion, as well as providing advice for parents who which to teach good Road Safety practices to their children, and links to external sites with more information and advice.
The Welsh Assembly Government is funding the Welsh Child Pedestrian training using the Kerbcraft scheme in partnership with local Welsh Authorities. Kerbcraft is a scheme designed to teach three pedestrian skills to 5-7 year old children (year 1). Training is progressive and each phase building on the foundation laid by earlier phases. Children are taught by means of practical training out on the side of the road rather than lessons in the classroom.
Training is undertaken by parent volunteers who are recruited, which enables a larger number of children to come into contact with the scheme. The training programme focuses on a set of clearly defined pedestrian skills whose absence is known to be associated with risk. Training is a long-term project in preparing children for future safety on the road.
For further information please contact Kayleigh Tonkins, Road Safety Project Officer - 01545 572053 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Road Safety can be taught at home and when out with your children, not just at school. The following tips can help when teaching your child how to stay safe on our roads:
- Explain Road Safety to your child and encourage them to ask you questions if they are confused
- Teach them the Green Cross Code
- For older children, help them plan safe routes for journeys they make
- Wear bright, reflective or fluorescent clothing when out and about, and explain that this is to help drivers see you
- Set a good example- don't take risks when out and about
- Don't use a mobile phone, or listen to music when crossing the road
- Always cross the road at the safest point, preferably a Pedestrian Crossing, if available
Road Safety for Pedestrians and Cyclists
Walking and Cycling are two of the healthiest ways to get around Ceredigion, whether travelling to work, school, the shops, or just to get out and about. However, pedestrians and cyclists are vulnerable on the roads. This page gives advice and information on how to remain safe.
There are a number of simple steps that Pedestrians can take to remain safe on Ceredigion's roads:
- Wear bright clothing. Darker clothes make it harder for drivers to notice you, particularly at night
- Always walk on the pavement where possible. If you have to walk on the road, remain in single file and keep close to the right-hand side of the road to face oncoming traffic
- When crossing the road, ensure you look both ways and pay attention to traffic. Don't cross the road while talking on the phone, or listening to music
- Cross the road at a safe place. use Pelican, Zebra or Toucan crossings where possible. Never cross between parked cars, if it can be helped
- Ensure you follow the advice given in Green Cross Code, and The Highway Code
Safety for Cyclists
There are a number of ways in which Cyclists can improve their safety on Ceredigion's roads. Rules 59-82 of the Highway Code give a number of ways that Cyclists can, and in some cases, must, take actions to improve both their safety, and the safety of other road users. These include, but are not limited to:
- Ensuring your bicycle is equipped with a front white light and a rear red light and that these items be switched on at night
- Ensuring that your bicycle is equipped with a red rear reflector, and amber/yellow pedal reflectors
- Riding on the road, rather than the pavement. Riding on the pavement is an offence
- Taking care when turning, riding in bus lanes, moving past or near traffic
- Keeping both hands on the handlebars, unless signalling or changing gears
Cyclists should also ensure that they have the right gear for cycling. Helmets should be snug and secure, clothing should not be so loose that it may become trapped in the bike's chain or wheels, and should also be bright or reflective, in order to help drivers see you at night.
Proper bike maintenance is also an integral part of Cycling Safety. Before setting off, please check that:
- Your saddle is at the correct height. When stopped, you should be able to comfortably stand above the frame with both feet on the ground
- Your brakes are fully functioning, and the cable isn't frayed
- Both tyres are fully-inflated, and puncture-free
- Your chain has not slipped, and does not catch when you move the pedals. Your chain should be kept well-oiled and free from rust
If you are concerned about performing maintenance on your bike, visit your local bike shop for advice. You will also be given lessons on bike maintenance if you attend Cycle Training.
For more information, please see The Highway Code's Rules for Cyclists.
For information to help people of all ages to get on your bike and start cycling, please read the attached 'Get Cycling Ceredigion' magazine. This magazine also includes guidance on cycle maintenance and safety and a map of the Ystwyth Trail - a 21-mile (34 km) multi-use trail linking Aberystwyth, Llanfarian, Ystrad Meurig and Tregaron with lots of off-road sections for safe, family friendly cycling.
Cycle Training is a useful way for both children, and adults who haven't cycled for a while, to increase their understanding of cycling and cycle safety.
Safe Cycling Training for adults is a three tier training scheme to teach the individual how to cycle safely and confidently on the road with respect for other road users. The three different levels are as follows:
Level 1 - conducted in a controlled environment away from roads and traffic. This provides basic cycling skills including, starting and stopping, manoeuvring, signalling and using the gears.
Level 2 - On-road training for those who have completed Level 1 and are ready to progress; it gives real cycling experience and makes trainees feel safer and capable of dealing with traffic on short commuting journeys or for short leisure rides.
Level 3 - develops the basic skills and trains riders to make journeys in a variety of traffic conditions competently, confidently and consistently. Cyclists reaching the Level 3 standard will be able to deal with all types of road conditions and more complex situations. The course covers dealing with hazards, making 'on-the-move' risk assessments and planning routes for safer cycling.
Safe Cycling Scheme
The Safe Cycling Scheme aims:
- To reduce the number of child cyclists injured in Ceredigion every year.
- Create an awareness of the need and importance of cycle training/education.
- To develop observation and manoeuvrability skills.
- To encourage the use of protective clothing and headgear.
- To prepare younger riders for on-road training.
- To highlight to parents the importance of cycle training.
Each year in Ceredigion more than 600 primary school pupils participate in the Safe Cycling Scheme. Trainees are introduced to the Highway Code for young road users; learn about cycle maintenance, conspicuity and the wearing of protective headgear. If you require any further details please Contact the Road Safety Section – 01545 572053 and ask for Miss Kayleigh Tonkins – Road Safety Project Officer.
Research undertaken by the Transport Research Laboratory (TRL), has shown that young riders benefit more from on-road training; and we in Ceredigion believe we are giving our children the best form of training available. We find children who have undertaken this type of training are more confident cyclists, even those with little on-road experience. It assists them to recognise and anticipate potential hazards and to take appropriate action to avoid them, as well as developing perceptions of speed and distance in their normal riding environment, whereas off road training sometimes makes it difficult for the trainees to transfer the skills they have learnt to real traffic situations.
Training is conducted on quiet local roads, in close proximity to the school, where simple manoeuvres such as left and right turns, overtaking a parked car etc., can be carried out. To be eligible for training all pupils should have reached the age of 10 (year 5).
Pupils progress will be constantly monitored during regular lessons, and upon completion of the course the young riders will be awarded with a Certificate to show they have participated in the training, there is no pass or fail as was the case some years ago.