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Are you driving on one of Britain’s most dangerous roads?

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Posted on 2nd Oct, 2018 by Dominic Benabda

It’s an unenviable title that – of course – has been awarded to various stretches of roads over the years. It’s always been the subject of numerous studies from various organisations concerned with vehicle safety, and throughout all of the most recent of these studies, there are certain areas which are, unfortunately, highlighted as being consistently dangerous to navigate for motorcyclists, HGVs and regular road users alike.

The North West has some of the UK’s riskiest roads

Amongst the most consistent studies were carried out by EuroRAP; the European Road Assessment Programme, who periodically assess motorways and A-roads outside of urban areas. They found that out of all Britain’s motorways, the M6 stretching from Cheshire to Warwickshire was the most hazardous place for motorists. Throughout 2017, there were 227 accidents on the M6, spread out across only 100 miles of motorway. Not far away, the A357 between Macclesfield and Buxton – known informally as the ‘Cat and Fiddle’ – was another road judged as the road with the most ‘persistently higher risk’.

Manchester Road is similarly dangerous – although it only had 100 accidents in 2017, it’s also the only section in EuroRAP’s top ten that wasn’t a motorway or A road. In fact, Manchester’s overall road safety record is questionable. It was the region that had the highest accident rate, with about 1775 in total throughout 2017. This is compared to an area like West Mercia, which had hundreds less with 1496. So, with a stormy winter apparently fast approaching, what can HGV drivers do to ensure they’re not the ones involved in similar accidents?

residential road lorry

Key driving tips for dangerous environments

Experienced drivers will likely already know that many of the worst accidents are simply caused by impatience. If you’ve ever driven on the ‘Cat and Fiddle’ of the A357 especially, it’s not hard to see why it’s the site of so many accidents. The narrowness of the road means that there are – realistically – extremely limited opportunities for overtaking, and many adjoining side streets and driveways for other vehicles to emerge from unexpectedly. Therefore, to avoid accidents, it’s vital for HGV drivers (and others!) to allow for extra space whenever possible, even in instances where it might not otherwise be deemed absolutely vital. (You can see one of our recent posts for an excellent example!)

On a related note, getting and maintaining a clear view is absolutely vital to avoiding accidents. This is obviously more difficult for HGV drivers than other road users, because of the height of their cabs from the ground. Thankfully, vehicle safety products like those we offer right here at Vision Techniques are specifically designed to make drivers’ lives easier, avoiding damaged vehicles, litigation for fleet operators, and most importantly, avoiding injury or death to other road users.

For example, our cyclist safety products can provide vital warning to drivers of cyclists and other vulnerable road users situated in their blind spots, while our patented, flagship StopSafe system is designed to carefully apply a controlled braking system to bring an out-of-control HGV to a halt, minimising the severity of any further consequences. You can shop our vehicle safety systems right here on our website – and of course, if you need any help or advice feel free to give our friendly sales team a call on 08458 684 858!