New road safety forum highlights closer partnership working

Gloucester County Council Press Release – 22 December 2021

A new road safety forum is being launched in Gloucestershire by the county’s emergency services, as they benefit from a new spirit of partnership.

It was agreed at a road safety workshop last week, attended by representatives from Gloucestershire Fire and Rescue Service (GFRS), the Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner (OPCC) and Gloucestershire Constabulary, that they would work together to establish the road safety forum.

Through greater collaboration between the services, it will tackle the number of road deaths and serious injuries in Gloucestershire, while working on a new road safety policy that will invite all interested parties to contribute towards.

The county council has allocated £300,000 in the coming budget for a Community Speedwatch Safety Fund which will further strengthen the close working relationship with the police, whilst combatting speeding across the county.

The road safety forum intends to draw together partner agencies so they can work on resolving road safety issues, including concerns raised by parish councils and residents under the ’20mph is plenty’ campaign.

It will help to coordinate work being delivered by the county council’s highways teams, GFRS, the OPCC and Gloucestershire Constabulary, so their effects complement each other and have an impact on increasing road safety.

It follows a virtual road safety workshop that was hosted by the county council on Wednesday 15 December featuring presentations from transport and road safety experts.

It is available to view on YouTube here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6bFoi_G7WUQ

The forum will meet regularly and will be jointly chaired by Cllr Dave Norman, Gloucestershire County Council cabinet member with responsibility for the Fire and Rescue Service and road safety, and Gloucestershire’s Deputy Police and Crime Commissioner Nick Evans. It will also include other representatives from the emergency services, local councils and groups with an interest in road safety.

Cllr Dave Norman said: “I am pleased a new road safety forum is being set up and I have no doubt that by working together collaboratively, it will have a positive impact on road safety in Gloucestershire and help to reduce road deaths and injuries.

“The work of the emergency services is so closely linked that a positive working relationship will be of great benefit to the whole county when tackling this serious issue.”

Chris Nelson, Gloucestershire’s Police and Crime Commissioner, said: “Earlier this year, a report by my office into road safety found that one in four people feel unsafe or very unsafe on our roads. This was a wake-up call for us to do better as a county.

“We all have a responsibility to tackle safety on Gloucestershire’s roads and I’m sure that this new spirit of genuine partnership is a big step in the right direction.  Working together will mean better use of taxpayers’ hard earned money and fewer injuries and deaths on our roads.”

Assistant Chief Constable Craig Holden said: “Gloucestershire Constabulary is pleased that such a strong focus is being applied by all partners to making our roads safer.

“It’s great to see this collaborative approach to an issue that affects all of us. All drivers have a responsibility to use the roads safely. Driving within the speed limit, without distraction and without the influence of drink or drugs in your system is so important, not only to yourself, but for the safety of passengers and other road users. We hope that this forum helps to prevent collisions, injuries and deaths on our roads.”