It’s about seeing and being seen

Nationwide action on traffic safety in the dark season.

With these posters the police and traffic guard at the Cottbus Elementary School draw attention to traffic safety in the dark season. Children with self-reflective material will be counted on their way to school by Thursday.

The Traffic Safety Network and the Road Safety Forum of the state of Brandenburg are launching a nationwide campaign to improve the visibility of pedestrians and cyclists, just in time for the dark season. In Cottbus, elementary schools compete for the title “Most Visible School” by Thursday.

The students of the four participating Cottbus primary schools are well prepared: “We are very pleasantly surprised at how well children and their parents are equipped,” summarizes Alexander after the first assignment at the Elementary School. Groh, the board member of the Cottbus Traffic Watch, lists what he has seen: bright clothes, reflectors, shining shoes, white T-shirts, which were brightened up with glowing smileys and – “it had some curious features” – a child with a big one LED bulb on the school backpack. Police officers have called for the action to support the campaign, and until Thursday in the morning hours, children with self-reflective material will be counted on their way to school. The school from Cottbus with the largest share of visible children wins a health and safety day in a Cottbus cinema.

The “Days of Visibility” should only be a prelude to traffic safety. Essentially, it’s about taking as much of this as routine into everyday life. Being well recognized as a road user in the dark season can save lives. In Saxony, 3,332 cyclists died last year, 19 of them died and 1418 pedestrians, 15 of them died. This reports the Ministry of the Interior in Dresden. In Brandenburg, nearly 750 pedestrians and around 2,600 cyclists were killed in traffic during the same period, according to the country’s police headquarters. Often these road users would simply be overlooked that in the dark the accident risk was about three times higher than during the day. Therefore: “For pedestrians and cyclists, bright reflective clothing is the be all and end, because reflective tape foe clothing can still be seen 140 meters away,” says Mario Heinemann from the police headquarters.

The police together with the municipal prevention council support the days of visibility. Also in these days, children in kindergartens and elementary schools as well as inhabitants at weekly markets are made aware of visible clothing.

See and be seen

For the first time, “Days of Visibility” took place in Brandenburg from 6 to 8 November. Called the network traffic safety Brandenburg and the forum traffic safety of the country Brandenburg had called. With more than 100 actions in front of schools, train stations, and other frequented places, pedestrians and cyclists were advised on the topic “Better visibility in the dark season” on foot.

In the spa town and district town cyclists and road users who were traveling on foot, among others in the crossing area and road of the unit on dangers in the dark season pointed. At dawn and at night, the risk of accidents is three times higher than during the day.

Marie Hench from the Traffic Safety Network said: “We would like to point out that pedestrians and cyclists can actively do something for their own safety. Equipped with reflective materials and good lighting on the bike, it is noticeable to drivers in the dark much sooner. Someone wearing reflective vest can be seen from a distance of up to 140 meters, while a person in dark clothes can only be seen from about 25 meters away. ”

In order to be able to convey the problem to children, in particular, the Traffic Safety Network had developed a mascot specifically for the campaign. So with Mole Claus, the topic could also be taught in a child-friendly way. The mole, which was equipped with a warning vest, graced the action posters and the accompanying information leaflet. “The mole cannot see well and because of its size and way of life it is not well visible to others – this is the quality it shares with pedestrians and cyclists traveling in the dark. For his own safety, Claus wears a safety vest with reflective tape for clothing, which makes him an excellent spectator. We especially recommend cyclists to follow suit, “continued Hench.

Against the background that about 850 walking in the state of Brandenburg and 2,800 cyclists in road accidents, appealed Kerstin from the Forum Road Safety: “Walking and cycling are often overlooked easily. Anyone who makes himself visible can reduce his or her accident risk. “Experts predict that the number of serious and fatal injuries to pedestrians and cyclists on the road could be reduced by around 50 percent if they were more visible. Appropriate options, from light clothing to reflective stripes on clothing or bicycles, were highlighted in the campaign.

State Secretary Ines Jesse from the Ministry of Infrastructure and Regional Planning added: “The dark season is upon us, which most people notice only after the time change. Then it is necessary to be particularly attentive since the accident risk rises on dark, wet roads. Especially in this time, our protection (b) angels of the road safety campaign “Dear sure. Dear Life. “Also in the nightclubs of the country to draw attention to these dangers. I am all the more pleased that there is such a large stake in the first nationwide “Visibility Days”. It shows that the committed actors of the network traffic safety Brandenburg and the forum traffic safety of the country Brandenburg make an important contribution for more traffic safety. Thank you very much to everyone. ”

Katrina Lange of the Ministry of the Interior and of the Municipal Council, in turn, advises all motorized road users: “In autumn the days are getting shorter and the twilight and dusk periods longer. Being good to see and see means more security. Therefore, the lighting system of the car should be checked in time. These include low beam, high beam, and daytime running lights, fog lights, brake lights, and turn signals. Anyone traveling with a poor lighting system not only endangers themselves but also increases the risk of accidents for others.

The “Days of Visibility” were funded by the Ministry of Infrastructure and Regional Planning and the Ministry of the Interior and Municipal Affairs of the State of Brandenburg. The actions were organized and implemented by regional actors, including the police, community and city administrations, and local traffic guards. The campaign was supported by the ADAC Berlin-Brandenburg, the DEKRA Automobile GmbH and the traffic safety campaigns “Dear sure. Dear Life “and” Get Off the Gas “.

That’s how you make yourself visible

The danger to pedestrians increases in traffic as the days get shorter and darker. Almost half of the accidents happened in the dark season or at dusk. If you are on foot, you should make yourself visible.

In the winter months, it is often dark early in the morning on the way to work and school. Especially when the weather is rain, cloudy or foggy.

The danger for pedestrians rises

In the dark season, the danger increases in the traffic, especially for pedestrians. According to Statistics Austria, a quarter of all accidents happen at dusk and in the dark. In the months from November to January, it is almost half. Similarly, 30 percent of all accidents happen with pedestrians in the same period. In Salzburg, there were a total of 292 pedestrian accidents in 2017. With 31 accidents, most of them happened in November, showing an ARBÖ Statistic.

Visibility is up and down

It is therefore important for your own safety to be visible in traffic. This is the easiest and best with the right clothing. Renate from the ARBÖ Salzburg in conversation with S24: “Reflective clothing is enormously important this season, ideally I’m dressed as a pedestrian completely bright.”

Reflective clothing

Since this is often not possible, there are small tools that provide more security. A reflective hood, a reflective vest or reflective snap-on tapes which made with reflective fabrics worn over arms or legs over the jacket or trousers makes pedestrians more visible to motorists.

Use illuminated crosswalks

In addition, one can avoid danger even with the choice of the way. Renate recommends crossing roads only in well-lit areas if possible. These include illuminated crosswalks, with or without traffic lights. Of course, headlamps and flashlights also make a pedestrian visible. However, Renate points out that they only shine in one direction and are not “round-about lighting”.

Unlit visible much later

A test of the ÖAMTC in Vienna showed how big the difference between a lighted and an unlit person for motorists. While a predominantly dark-clothed person already disappeared about 40 meters in front of a stationary truck in the dark of the night, was a pedestrian with blue jeans and a bright jacket visible to the driver from a far greater distance. Even better to recognize was clothed with reflectors or even a covered safety vest.

About the vest that protects, gives security, teaches and brings up

With the constantly increasing traffic intensity in Poland, and the ever-increasing risk of road accidents involving pedestrians, the need for comprehensive and effective measures to reduce this risk.

A big problem is the pedestrian traffic, who often invisible on the road become victims of accidents that could be avoided using elementary safety rules.

When it comes to children and adolescents, it is a group that is particularly vulnerable to such danger, and on the other hand the easiest one in comprehensive education. It is easier to teach and implement to the permanent behavior of a young man than an adult.

The reflective vest not only protects and provides safety but also teaches and brings up. This simple element of clothing with a specific purpose can change a lot in favor of not only accident statistics involving pedestrians, and perhaps above all, in the consciousness and mentality of the whole society.

The clear benefits of wearing a reflective vest with reflective tape for clothing in traffic situations can be relatively easily translated into prophylactic programs, educational lessons, or meetings with parents of pupils at the school. However, it is best to dress this uniform program of nationwide prophylaxis and to present a large group of recipients in an attractive and easily absorbable form.

This is the task of the nationwide campaign “Good to see you” prepared as part of the “Safe Road” program. The campaign has several key arguments for the effective upbringing and preparing campaign recipients – children and youth – for systematic and sensible use of a reflective vest. Let’s look at the main advantages of the campaign and let us consider how it can be implemented well in the immediate surroundings (school, family).

The first tool, the most obvious one, is a reflective vest. As part of the campaign, 3 million vests will be distributed in primary schools across Poland in a few months. The campaign’s intentions and its purposefulness ensure that this is a long-lasting, long-lasting effect. During the distribution of vests, a number of educational and educational activities should be carried out, thanks to which the recipients – children and adolescents – will appreciate the advantages of this type of security, will like them and want to use it in every necessary situation.

Animations showing various situations on the road and in social life show, among other threats that young people should avoid. Animations created on the model of animated film known to children from TV appeal to their imagination and consolidate new patterns of behavior.

Another, very useful teachers and educators tool are the lesson scenarios prepared for two age groups of students: for grades 1-3 and 4-8 primary schools.

The fourth, the most effective element of the campaign reaching the widest audience is the film spot. Thirty-second video is based on the comedy convention, where the well-known film actor and comedian Cezary Pazura plays the double character of a hero: a wise mentor and an unlucky teenager. The leitmotif of the clip encourages you to show off the best side, that is, to be noticeable and this is what the reflective vest has to offer.

The last, the least important part of the campaign published on its website is the set of rules entitled “7 reflective road councils”. Such a set should be included in every primary school class and be subject to classes at different age levels of children at least several times a school year.

All the above-mentioned elements make up a coherent and communicative campaign, which supported by a distribution for children, 3 million reflective vests with reflective materials have a chance to permanently change the habits of the behavior of Poles participating in road traffic.

It comes in the autumn, on the roads it is a risk period

Highlands – Slow down. With the advent of autumn, the police appeal to the driver to adapt the speed to the unfavorable weather. Pedestrians and cyclists must act responsibly.

First of all, there is a danger that the car will “skidding” unexpectedly. Particularly less experienced drivers can be frightened by the situation, and then crash. “The carriage becomes more slippery due to falling leaves and moisture, increasing the risk of skidding. Counting is also necessary with the first frosts. Particularly in the morning, the roads on the bridges and the forest sections can be frozen, “police spokeswoman Dana warns.

Another danger is in the shorter days. Driving under reduced visibility requires extra attention. Fogs are linked with autumn, and in these sections, drivers should slow down, increase the distance from vehicles in front of them and prefer not to drive at all. “The Road Traffic Law provides that a driver may only drive at such a rate as to be able to stop the vehicle from the distance to which he has a view,” the spokesman added.

The arrival of autumn also applies to cyclists and pedestrians who are the most vulnerable in road traffic. “Seeing and be seen is the basic rule of road safety that applies to all road users. Under reduced visibility doubles. Many drivers who injured pedestrians agree that they have not seen it at all or too late, “she explained.

“From the beginning of this year until the end of September, there were 93 traffic accidents on the road where pedestrians were involved. Five pedestrians died in the accident, nine suffered severe injuries and another 71 were injured lightly. Without injuries, only eight pedestrians escaped from the accident, “she added sad statistics. The reflective vest with reflective tape for clothing is simply a necessity that every pedestrian must be equipped with in low visibility when walking outside the sidewalk and public lighting. Otherwise, it is also subject to a fine of up to two thousand crowns.

Cyclists are slowly ending the season, but they also have security on the roads. “We meet repeatedly with unlit cyclists who risk their health or even their lives unnecessarily,” said Dana. The bicycle equipment must be free from two independent brakes, the reflective materials and the tires must not be deformed. Only by the end of September, there were 132 accidents with the participation of cyclists, which two of them did not survive.

Do not forget the reflective elements!

Summer ended very quickly, and there is a time of sober and gray days. The darkness is still early, and it was again a very recent amendment to Act 361/2000 Coll. on road traffic. It came into force on February 20, 2016, and its main objective is to prevent serious and fatal accidents caused by the fact that the pedestrian was not visible enough on the road. This is to ensure mandatory reflective elements, but unfortunately, a number of pedestrians who travel on unlit roads are unfortunately ignored. Many people think the car has lights to see the driver. And that means they see them, so nothing can happen to them.

It is stupid to repeat all the media every fall. But it’s still not enough. This is evidenced by one very sad number. In the first six months of this year, 233 people died on our roads. Autumn and winter are probably also signing this issue in very bold and sad script. What with this?’

See and be seen

Remember that it is not only important to see, but to be seen! The driver who encounters the darkness of the pedestrian in dark clothes has an adequate response of only about 18 meters. Put into practice, this means that at a speed of 70 km / h, which is 20 km / h lower than the maximum speed outside the village, the driver does not have a reaction for one second. And in this time, pedestrians must notice and adequately respond. Is it even possible? And what happens when a pedestrian has at least some reflective material? The driver is then able to register it at a distance of 200 meters and has enough time for a reaction.

If you pull out how to look like the right reflective element, then it is difficult to advise in this. The law is unconcerned, and we think any reflex is better than none. Ideal, of course, is a reflective vest, but we understand that you will not normally wear it with you. However, it is also good to use reflective tapes that fit into each pocket and are available almost everywhere. Children can be “adorned” with iron-on reflective images with the motives of their favorite characters. Remember that if you are driving on a dark road without a walkway, always keep the reflective element on your hand or foot that is facing the roadway. So the driver will see the moving glare from the lights.

We already met on our roads with some pedestrians picking up a mobile phone with a flashlight turned on, and they use instead of reflective elements. It may seem like a good idea, but the mobile or the flashlight itself cannot reflect the light coming from the car’s reflector, but instead, it may lose it (like weaker sources of light). Moreover, these elements are not visible from all sides.

Do you wonder if you are in danger of using reflexive elements? In the first place, you are at risk of at least serious injury or, in the worst case, death. These are the most important reasons why you need to buy and use a 25-pound reflective tape. If you accidentally catch the police without it, then you will be fined up to CZK 2,000 in the block and from 1,500 to 2,500 CZK in administrative proceedings.

The cops, eyes on the Bicyclists

Police officers warn cyclists to be properly equipped when in traffic. Functional braking system and reflective vests are optional, appeal to the people of the law.

Police officers warn cyclists that they have to comply with traffic rules when they are in traffic. The bicycle must be suitably equipped, the law people say.

If they ignore the rules, cyclists can be fined, police warn.

Obligations of the bicyclist

Wear reflective vests with reflective materials on all public roads, both day and night, especially at night. The reflective tape for clothing will provide 360° protection while you are working under low light conditions.

Take your identity ID and prove that you are over 14 years old when you are on the public road.

Do not run under the influence of alcohol, drugs or drugs that disrupt the nervous system.

Indicates with the extended arm when changing direction as well as stopping;

Do not carry other people on bicycles, except for children under 7 if the bicycle has a seat approved for this purpose.

Do not run on the sidewalk, but only on the special bicycle tracks, and in the absence of them on the right side of the road.

Do not cross the street by bicycle through the pedestrian areas.

Keep at least one hand on the handlebars and both feet on the pedals!

When we run around the bikes, we are pedestrians and respect the pedestrian rules.

Safety vests save lives

In recent years, attention has increasingly focused on better visibility by wearing reflective safety vests or throws.

Corresponding safety vests get the schools free of charge for each student via the ADAC. The foundation also took part in the year so that safety vests in a bright blue with the emblem of FC Schaller 04 were distributed to the schools for a complete urban vintage.

In November, the parties to the regulatory partnership carried out counts of reflective clothing (safety vests, warning triangles, covers for the school bag and so on) at all elementary schools in Gelsenkirchen. The result of this action was for the regulatory partners for the most part very disappointing: out of a total of more than 10,000 elementary school students, only 1412 (the previous year 1479) carried vest. Of these, less than 5 percent of students in one-third of elementary schools have worn reflective clothing. The counting takes place since 2012 so that one can draw comparisons to the previous year’s again and again.

Kirsten Jens, second chairman of the Gelsenkirchen Road Safety Board, makes it clear: “The safety vests are available and will be replaced regularly if they have been around for several years, the biggest problem being parents sending their children to school without this safety.”

Certainly one of the school’s tasks is to alert students to road hazards and to show them behaviors. However, this does not replace the responsibility of the parents.

For the visibility of our children when leaving the apartment, especially in the dark, only the parents are responsible. So once again an appeal to all parents and guardians: Give your children timely help for safe behavior in traffic! Make them visible in the dark at this time of the year so that other road users can recognize them in time!

In the middle of December, the Verkehrswacht Gelsenkirchen and the foundation made a handover appointment in the daycare center on behalf of all other kindergartens. In total, around 2,300 safety vests with reflective materials were distributed.

Especially “Schaller helps” is very committed to the safety of the kids.

Cyclists and pedestrians recognize in good time

“There are just a lot of accidents involving cyclists because they are not seen,” says the employee of the Beranger Ordnungsamt. As part of the nationwide “Day of visibility” campaign, she and her colleague, both of whom do not want to give their names, inform pedestrians and cyclists about the benefits of reflective clothing in traffic on Tuesday morning in front of the Tobias Seiler High School. Reflective bands, flashing lights, bag trailers, gym bags, and safety vests are distributed to ensure that you are seen by other road users.

The employees pay attention not only to the clothing but also to the existing light sources of the bicycles. Many children and adults were already well equipped. “I have reflective clothing, but it’s at home,” was still a frequent response from the students. In the twilight and at night small things, such as a safety vest or reflectors, could help enormously, explained the employee of the public order office.

Cyclists are only required to have a functioning front and rear light. Additional reflectors and helmets are not mandatory, but should always be worn for your own safety. According to the Brandenburg network, experts believe that the number of fatal and serious injuries to cyclists would be reduced by 50 percent if they were more visible to motorists.

In dark clothing, drivers can only detect pedestrians or cyclists from around 25 meters. If you wear reflective material or additional light sources, the distance expands to about 140 meters and you can be recognized early enough. Parents should make sure that children not only wear reflective stripes on the front and back but also on the sides of the body for 360-degree visibility.

Reflectors can save lives

Rain, snow and strong wind accompany us in the autumn and winter. Road conditions are considerably worse then. Although there are less than 40 days to the beginning of astronomical winter, it is worth taking care of your safety now.

As it gets darker and faster, remember about reflective vests. Thanks to them, pedestrians are visible from a greater distance. Even the youngest know it. “You can see us in the dark and the person is more visible,” says one of the students, “We are then more secure and visible,” his colleague adds.

Let’s also remember that outside the built-up area, we have a duty to have a reflective element. “Regulations impose an obligation on pedestrians who move outside built-up areas after dark. Then we have a duty to have a reflective material with us, ” informs Dolan, a spokesman for the police.

There may be a fine of 20 to 500 zlotys for breaking this provision. According to the police spokesman, a driver traveling at 80 or 90 km/h, there is no chance of slowing down and he notices the pedestrian practically at the time of the deduction. The situation is different when the pedestrian has a reflective tape on clothing. Then the driver sees a pedestrian from a distance of about 130 – 150 meters, which is five times faster. In other words, such a reflective element can save our lives.

Roadmaps should also be prepared for changing the conditions on the roads. It’s time to change tires. There is a major difference between the summer and winter tires on wet and slippery roads. “The summer tire, under the influence of low temperatures, hardens and becomes very slippery. The winter tire gives you a better grip. It has more incisions that drain the water squeezed out of the snow, and allow it to be pressed down on the ice.” explains Karakas.

Drivers should also remember to check the technical condition of their vehicle. When slippery roads are on the road, it is also worth maintaining a greater distance between cars.

The autumn and winter weather introduces many hazards on the roads. They affect both drivers and pedestrians. Although the regulations require to have a reflection in an undeveloped area, it is worth having such an element in any other situation. Drivers should also be more cautious with worse visibility and more difficult road conditions.