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19 August 2020 | Comment | Article by Cari Sowden-Taylor

Keeping pedestrians safe: Injury Prevention Week

I am pleased to have recently been appointed as Secretary for the Association of Personal Injury Lawyers’ group – APIL Cymru Wales.

This year, for the first time, APIL’s annual Injury Prevention Day has expanded to a full week, with the event running from17-21 August. APIL’s members are committed to campaigning for reform to improve the law for injured people. But, we would all prefer for people not to be injured needlessly in the first place.

The focus for the campaign this year will be on road safety for pedestrians–particularly children as they prepare to go back to school in August and September.

APIL has worked with YouGov to complete a survey about pedestrians and children, which highlights that most pedestrians and non-drivers don’t know how to tell if a car is about to reverse. According to the research, only 44 per cent of non-drivers knew to look out for reverse lights.

“When walking behind a parked car everyone should be aware that it is about to reverse towards you when those white lights come on,” said Sam Elsby, President of APIL.

Yet, some of the more worrying responses to the survey question included:

  • “Make eye contact with the driver”
  • “Look for fogged up windows to know someone is in the vehicle”
  • “Check the car’s wing mirrors”
  • “The driver beeping their horn”
  • “Using hazard lights”

Pedestrians account for more than a quarter of road deaths. Sadly, the very latest figures show that nearly 22,000 people on foot were killed or injured in the last year.

I’m a mum of 2 boys, aged1 and4years old. With my eldest starting school in September, I’m particularly concerned with teaching them about road safety. Throughout my career, I have sadly dealt with numerous cases involving pedestrians suffering injury and I know how easily an accident can occur. I have tried to teach my children about road safety from a young age, with a focus on the proper use of pedestrian crossings, as well as ensuring that they properly understand traffic lights.

The latest survey results from APIL has really raised my awareness of the danger of reversing vehicles, and the fact that my children may not be aware that a vehicle was reversing. I will be using the graphic that APIL have prepared to assist me in doing this.

Greater awareness of injury prevention will assist everyone in maintaining the safety of themselves and their family members, especially children who are particularly vulnerable on the roads. As ever, at Hugh James, as acknowledged leading national catastrophic injury specialists, we would be happy to assist you if you have any queries.

About the Author:

Laura Bailey is an associate in the Neurolaw Department and represents claimants with traumatic brain injuries and spinal cord injuries. Laura is involved in bringing claims against insurance companies, the Motor Insurers’ Bureau, the Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority and local authorities. She is also Secretary of APIL Cymru Wales.

Disclaimer: The information on the Hugh James website is for general information only and reflects the position at the date of publication. It does not constitute legal advice and should not be treated as such. If you would like to ensure the commentary reflects current legislation, case law or best practice, please contact the blog author.


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