Dozens of fleets have embraced a road safety scheme which highlights the main causes of crashes in a series of stickers displayed on vehicles.
Billed as a “radical, new community road safety initiative for the national fleet community”, Project Pictogram was given its official national launch at the National Motor Museum at Beaulieu, this month.
However, just five months after the scheme was first revealed by Fleet News (October 1, 2015), thousands of vehicles are now displaying the Project Pictogram stickers.
TJ Transport and sister company TJ Waste operate out of seven sites across Hampshire, West Sussex and Bristol and are displaying the pictograms on all their 160 vehicles.
The company has integrated Project Pictogram into its health and safety training with a full briefing on the project to all 210 employees believing the ‘toolbox talk’ will help staff become evangelists for the campaign.
Luke Haskell, marketing and sales development manager at TJ Transport, said: “We want to ensure that we minimise the risks to anyone affected by our business operations, so we have taken the initiative to support Project Pictogram.
“Not only will the training help us remind our drivers of their responsibilities, but the stickers on our vehicles will also reinforce awareness of safe driving practice among other road users wherever we travel.”
Waste collection and disposal company Ace Liftway has fitted pictograms to all 35 commercial vehicles on its fleet. Transport manager Gordon Harrison told Fleet News: “We take road safety and the safety of our drivers and other road users very seriously.
“By fixing the pictograms to our vehicles, we can promote the importance of road safety to other road users. I hope that other car and commercial fleets will take the initiative on board and give the campaign momentum.
“If that happens and road users drive at the appropriate speed, keep a safe distance when following other vehicles, don’t use their mobile phones, wear their seat belts and don’t drink or drug-drive, the roads will be safer for everyone.”
Andy Leigh, central health and safety manager at Home Retail Group is also supporting the initiative. He said: “This is a great low cost initiative that provides a simple reminder of road safety rules that help to keep traffic flowing.”
Other organisations backing the initiative include: Colas, Green Flag, Radian Housing, Lucketts Coaches, Hampshire and Thames Valley Police, Hampshire County Council, Kirklees Council, Portsmouth City Council, Southampton City Council, Protyre, Thruxton Motorsport Centre and Eggars School.
Project Pictogram focuses on the main causes of road crashes, the so-called ‘fatal four’ – inappropriate speed, driver distractions (most commonly, mobile phones), not wearing a seat-belt and alcohol or drug impairment – and adds a fifth contributory factor: safe following distance, due to the volume of rear-end shunts.
They are represented in five pictograms based on the British road sign system, which can be displayed on the back of fleet vehicles, acting as a reminder to drive safely.
It is hoped the pictograms will become the UK industry standard, becoming the ‘recycle’ logo of safe driving.
The initiative is the brainchild of Phil Palfrey at Hampshire Fire and Rescue Service.
He said: “Driving is a herd activity; by positively influencing large sections of the herd around these key risk-reducing driver behaviour habits, the wider group is likely to conform to the new safer practices.”
Project Pictogram is backed by leading UK road safety experts, including: the Institute of Advanced Motorists, Road Safety GB, the Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents (RoSPA), the Chief Fire Officers’ Association, the Department for Transport’s Think campaign, the Association of British Insurers and the British Insurance Brokers’ Association.