A new campaign to reduce the number of road collisions in Aberdeenshire and Moray has been launched to highlight the risks that can contribute to serious and fatal collisions.
Launched on on Wednesday by Police Scotland, Operation CEDAR (Challenge, Educate, Detect and Reduce) coincides with recent figures which show an increase in the number of fatalities on the area’s roads to 26 over the last twelve months.
This has increased by 10 when compared to the same period last year.
This, however, is in contrast to a reduction in Serious Injury Collisions (219 when compared to 233 last year (2012-2013), a 6% decrease, and Slight Injury Collisions (475 when compared to 605 last year (2012-2013), which shows a 21.5% decrease.
Although the combined figures show a downward trend, Aberdeenshire and Moray Superintendent, George MacDonald, has expressed concern at the level of fatalities in the area.
He said: “Whilst acknowledging the situation, we never lose sight that behind the figures and statistics are real people, leaving families and friends dealing with upset, loss and grief.
“This is very real when someone is killed but you should not underestimate the lasting effects of those who are involved in serious collisions, on the scale of physical injury, to emotional upset and trauma.
“Road safety is a complex area and both Police and other partners spend considerable time to try and make sense of why collisions have occurred, and to identify any areas where we can take steps to prevent and reduce future incidents.”
He added: “Over a number of years we have made significant progress linked to certain themes of driver behaviour or contributing factors for injury and harm on our roads - drink driving being one - where we are socially more comfortable to challenge drivers, pick up the phone and report concerns.”
Operation CEDAR will also look to tackle poor driving standards, health issues and declining ability to drive due to, for example, eyesight, medication, medical conditions, mobility and confidence to drive in certain conditions.