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With the launch of Road Safety Week in Scotland, Clydesdale’s constituency MSP Aileen Campbell has urged drivers to take heed of a warning that rush hour accidents are not just confined to busy city centres. Latest figures have revealed a ‘Country Roads Rush Hour’ between 3pm and 6pm when accidents on rural roads peak.

In 2011, country roads accounted for 1,050 serious and fatal road accidents and the largest proportion - around 70% - of all road deaths in Scotland. Over half of the victims were aged between 22 and 40 years old and 3 out of 4 of those deaths were men.

The call for extra caution on country roads at all times of the day or night comes from the Scottish Government and Road Safety Scotland (part of Transport Scotland) who have launched a campaign to make drivers aware of how often unforeseen distractions and driving at an inappropriate speed for the road conditions, can cause serious accidents on country roads.

Commenting on the statistics, Aileen said:

"It’s clear that the Scottish Government is making good progress in driving down road casualties, with numbers at their lowest level since records began over 60 years ago. But while our roads are safer than ever before, there are still too many needless deaths and serious injuries.

"The hard facts are that three quarters of fatalities happen on country roads and most of the victims are young men.

"Living in rural Clydesdale I know that country roads can be incredibly unpredictable. Because the levels of traffic is much lower than in the major towns and cities, it is clear from the statistics that some drivers can on occasions take risks or drive at excessive speeds. This has resulted in too many accidents and tragic deaths on too many occasions.

"As we enter the winter months we can confidently predict that the driving conditions on some of the roads in Clydesdale will become increasingly challenging and potentially treacherous. I would urge all of our rural travellers to take extra care and take heed of the ‘country roads rush hour’ ".

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Aileen Campbell MSP, Kirkton Chambers, 12 Kirkton Street, Carluke ML8 4AB • 01555 750 249 • This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

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