West Midlands Fire Service (WMFS) is holding a number of events throughout National Road Safety Week to ensure pedestrians and motorists get the message about road safety.

Firefighters and the service’s Road Casualty Reduction Team (RCRT) will be out and about in local communities, urging everyone to remain safe and vigilant on the roads and to do their bit to reduce the number of children and young people killed or seriously injured on the road.

In 2011, 453 pedestrians were killed nationally, accounting for nearly a quarter of all roadside deaths. The number of people seriously injured was nearly 5,000.

To raise awareness, WMFS is using National Road Safety Week to spread the road safety message. To this end, a number of events have been set up. They are as follows:

  • 8 May: Handsworth firefighters will be working with West Midlands Police on a roadside stop evening, talking to drivers about safety and distraction issues
  • 9 May: Dudley fire crews will be working with the police to talk to the public about car seats, pedestrian safety and driver distractions
  • 10 May: Wednesbury firefighters will be at Wednesbury Retail Park, demonstrating the WMFS crash car, and giving pedestrian safety and driver distraction advice
  • 11 May: WMFS RCRT ‘Fit and Fun’ day in Walsall Wood, with a focus on all aspects of road safety
  • 11 May: Ward End fire crews will be giving out pedestrian and road safety advice at the local Tesco.

Throughout the week, firefighters from West Bromwich will also be visiting schools, high streets and Sandwell Hospital to deliver road safety messages, while on Friday, May 10, between 12noon and 1pm, experts from the RCRT will host a road safety question and answer session via their Twitter account @WMFSRCRT, using the hashtag #askRCRT.

Sam Lewis, manager of the WMFS Road Casualty Reduction Team, said: “Some drivers’ behaviour has changed dramatically because of distractions from mobile technology such as phones and music players. A phone call or texting at the wheel could have life-changing consequences, or worse, for you or someone else.”