Campaign is aiming to make roads safer

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Motorists are being targeting in a new joint initiative aiming to make roads safer.

Northumbria Police is teaming up with Tyne and Wear Fire and Rescue Service, Northumberland Fire and Rescue Service and the North East Ambulance Service to educate the public as part of National Road Safety Week.

Officers from the Motor Patrols unit will be raising awareness about the importance of safe driving through various initiatives.

They will also be visiting schools, community centres and military bases to deliver advice aimed at keeping drivers safe.

The week of action is being led by road safety charity Brake, who have launched a “drive less, live more” campaign which calls on drivers use their cars less.

Chief Inspector John Heckels, head of Motor Patrols, said: “We are delighted to help launch the campaign and we will continue to work together with organisations such as Brake to try and make a difference on our roads, such as raising awareness of dangerous driving.

“Operation Dragoon will continue to target dangerous drivers and do all they can to educate the people of the north east about how to stay safe on our roads and look after the most vulnerable road users.

“Whether road users are vulnerable because they are on foot or on bike or because of their age and lack of road experience, we are doing all we can to make sure we reduce the amount of crashes in our region.”

Dave Jefferson, group manager for prevention and education at Tyne and Wear Fire and Rescue Service, said: “It is often the role of firefighters to release seriously injured people from vehicles after road traffic collisions and this task is made even more distressing when the injured people are young.”

“We are joining forces with Northumbria Police, of Northumberland Fire and Rescue Service, North East Ambulance Service and other partners to drive down road traffic accidents and help drivers and passengers to stay as safe as possible on our roads.”

Simon Swallow, strategic head of emergency care, operations and resilience at North East Ambulance Service, said: “Frontline staff at North East Ambulance Service can attend hundreds of road traffic collisions in their career – some which may be only minor, but many of which can be serious traumatic and life changing events for both the patients and their loved ones, as well as our crews who come to their aid every day.

“Everything we do as emergency care workers is designed to protect life, so anything we can do to remind people about the dangers of our roads and the impacts of such accidents will hopefully help to keep them safe.”

Anyone who wants to report a dangerous driver, or has information that might help make roads safer, should contact the police’s Op Dragoon team on 101 – always ring 999 if it is an emergency.