Cycle safety scheme moves into Shire

An initiative to educate cyclists and improve their visibility and safety on the roads has been extended into Aberdeenshire.

In December and January, Grampian Police urged cyclists in Aberdeen city to ‘Be Bright, Use Lights’ during the darker winter mornings and nights.

The scheme has involved officers speaking to nearly 200 cyclists not adequately visible on the road, giving suitable advice and even handing out reflective kit, including fluorescent tops and backpack covers.

It has now been extended to the rest of the force area, following continued support from local businesses.

The names of those cyclists stopped by officers was also entered into a prize draw to win bicycle lights.

Roads Policing Inspector Kevin Wallace said cyclists stopped by his officers have,in the main. been receptive to their advice.

He added: “The reality is, they have been pulled over because we have seen something which is putting their safety at risk and we want them to put that right.

“It’s not about telling people off, it’s about making our roads safer places to be and educating people about danger they may not have considered.

“Cyclists being visible to other road users is extremely important, particularly during these darker winter months.

“Together with Road Safety Grampian we hope to highlight to cyclists just how invisible they can appear to be to other road users and the implications that this may have for their personal safety.

“Some cyclists do not use lights on their bikes or wear any reflective clothing at all. Similarly, backpacks are often worn by cyclists on top of any reflective clothing which significantly reduces the chances of other road users seeing them.”

Officers are currently conducting roadside stop checks with cyclists throughout the region and speaking to them about keeping themselves safe.