Complacent drivers provide massive threat on our roads
OVERCONFIDENCE and complacency is leading to widespread illegal risk-taking on roads, according to road safety charity Brake.
Its report today reveals two thirds of drivers admitted to endangering others by breaking traffic laws.
Brake and insurance company Direct Line are appealing for drivers to pledge to stay safe and legal at the wheel.
Brake is also calling on government help to make the roads safer by taking drivers who repeatedly flout the law off the road, putting more money into specialist roads policing and tightening up the penalty points system so drivers who tot up 12 points or more cannot escape a ban by pleading exceptional hardship.
The report comes as the Echo's RIP 479 campaign to cut the number of deaths on Gloucestershire's roads continues.
There have been 479 killed on the county's roads between 2000 and 2012 – enough to fill eight double decker buses.
A quarter of those (121) were aged between 17 and 24.
Brake spokeswoman Laura Woods said: "Road crashes are the single biggest killer of young people in the UK.
"It's great to see the Echo campaigning to raise awareness of this important issue: even one person dying on our roads is one too many.
"Many drivers are dangerously complacent about taking risks on the roads.
"It doesn't matter how good a driver you think you are: if you take a risk such as speeding, you are endangering yourself and everyone else on the road.
"Road crashes destroy lives, tear families apart and devastate whole communities.
"Brake calls on all drivers to make a pledge to drive safely and legally, abiding by traffic laws that are in place to protect us all."
Gloucestershire County Council's cabinet member for fire, planning and infrastructure Will Windsor-Clive, a member of the county's Road Safety Partnership, said: "It is every road user's responsibility to not only know the law but keep to it at all times.
"Laws are there for a reason and we know that road collisions can happen when they're bent or broken."
"One casualty is one too many and we will continue to educate drivers and all other road users about their responsibilities on the road."
Chief fire officer Jon Hall, who acts as operations lead for the Road Safety Partnership, said: "Recent tragic crashes on our roads have highlighted just how important it is that we continue to work together with our key partners to make sure such incidents are prevented."