Road Safety Event in Abergavenny Helps to Bring Communities Together
Community Support Officer Amanda Yung from Abergavenny Team has been working to tackle an ongoing issue with anti-social driving, along with educating young drivers about safe driving following 19 fatal road traffic collisions in Gwent since January 2014.
CSO Yung organised an event in Abergavenny in June along with partner agencies including the Road Safety Team from Monmouthshire County Council and South Wales Fire and Rescue.
The event was held at a local car park where high reports of anti-social driving had been received. The aim of the event was to encourage residents to go along and meet the young people and give their views on how the driving and behaviour was affecting them.
Also, the drivers had their chance to have their say and talk to the planning team of the council who were proposing a change to the layout of the car park. These plans detail a trial phase where full access to the car park will be restricted during certain times in order to try and reduce the number of incidents of anti-social behaviour involving vehicles. Consultation with local members and organisations has taken place to make sure that no disruption is caused to legitimate users of the car park.
South Wales Fire and Rescue arranged for a crash car to be there so drivers could see the true impact of how a vehicle can be damaged during a traffic collision.
Amanda talked to drivers and showed them a visual demonstration called ‘Not In their Shoes’. This showed a pair of shoes laid out in a timeline, showing a pair of shoes for every victim of a traffic collision in the last year. Each pair of shoes showed where the collision happened.
The event was very successful with over 40 vehicles, drivers and passengers coming along, as well as many residents.
Motorcyclists also went along and the team talked to them about the Green Dot Scheme which encourage motorcyclists to complete a CRASH card detailing their medical history, the details of any medication currently being taken and telephone numbers of the next of kin. They put this card securely in their helmets, it comes with a green sticker to attach to the outside of the helmet to indicate to arriving emergency services that a CRASH card is contained inside.
CSO Yung said: “I’ve got to know the drivers in Abergavenny and the local residents so it was important to me to help prevent anti-social issues and also mainly the fatalities on our roads. The people involved in anti-social driving are a small minority of the actual people using the car park and they are not always aware of how their behaviour impacts on neighbouring residents. This work is ongoing and we will continue to work to make sure our residents are safe and free from anti-social behaviour issues.”
Carolyn Derosaire, Road Safety Officer from Monmouthshire County Council added: "This was a wonderful opportunity to engage with a group which is often demonized, the majority of whom are not intent on causing a nuisance, but indulging their enthusiasm for their cars. The pairs of empty shoes, representing those killed on the roads of Monmouthshire since 2014, made a very powerful and visual statement that we are not dealing with statistics, but real people and real losses."