Safer driving campaign aims to tackle racing amongst young men in Bolton

Bolton young drivers event

A CAMPAIGN is being launched to help tackle racing and antisocial driving in Bolton following a number of serious collisions in the town.

Greater Manchester Fire and Rescue Service (GMFRS), Greater Manchester Police (GMP), Bolton Council and Bolton Council of Mosques (BCoM) are teaming up for the pilot campaign, which will run in the lead up to summer.

It comes after a serious collision involving three cars that were racing in St Helen’s Road, Daubhill, at 11.30pm on July 21, 2013.

Shocked onlookers rushed to the scene to help and pull people from the cars after one vehicle flipped onto its roof. The incident resulted in 11 casualties including pedestrians and some of the injuries sustained were serious.

One man was sentenced to three years and 10 months in a young offenders’ institute and disqualified from driving for four years, another was sentenced to two years and eight months in prison and also disqualified from driving for four years and a third man was sentenced to six months suspended for 18 months and was ordered to carry out 100 hours unpaid work.

On August 4, 2013, emergency services attended a collision between two high performance cars on Blackburn Road in Astley Bridge shortly before 2am.

A 14-year-old boy and a 26-year-old man were released from the cars by firefighters and were taken to hospital. Five other people suffered minor injuries.

As part of the campaign, a local freelance journalist has been commissioned to produce a DVD about the Daubhill incident and the effects it had on the lives of those involved as well as the local community and emergency services who attended.

He will also join BCoM representations, police officers, firefighters and community safety staff from GMFRS at a series of events at mosques throughout the town starting on Friday, February 21 – where a range of activities will be taking place to raise awareness of the dangers of racing and antisocial driving.

GMFRS’ Driving Simulator will give people the opportunity to test their driving skills and risk awareness, the Service’s Community Event Vehicle will be at the venues with various safety resources and police and fire officers will be on hand to provide information and advice.

 Greater Manchester Police and Crime Commissioner, Tony Lloyd, said:

“Road safety in Bolton is an important issue for local people and is everyone’s responsibility. The safer driving campaign is an excellent way to raise awareness of the risks associated with dangerous driving in Bolton in light of a series of collisions in recent months.

“The campaign represents a valuable opportunity for a range of services to work together with the community, particularly young people, to improve safety for everyone.

“I continue to encourage all users to share the road safely. Members of GMP will be on hand to talk openly with young drivers about the risks they face and the responsibility they have to drive safely within the local area.” Tony Lloyd

Chair of BCoM, Dr Kamran Khan, said: “If BCoM can contribute towards preventing an issue that’s become prevalent across Bolton by engaging with local communities as well as local authorities, it gives us the opportunity to provide a safer environment for residents in Bolton.

 “If we can save lives as a result of our contribution to the campaign then it makes all the effort completely worthwhile.”

 A full public launch event is being planned for later in the year and further information will be provided nearer the time.  

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