Lothian and Borders Police win major road safety award

Brenda Mitchell from Motorcycle Law Scotland with Inspector John Beresford of Lothian and Borders Police
Brenda Mitchell from Motorcycle Law Scotland with Inspector John Beresford of Lothian and Borders Police

A MOTORCYCLE safety campaign developed and designed by Lothian and Borders Police has won a prestigious award.

Around the Corner – a website based initiative - has received the Prince Michael International Road Safety Motorcycle Industry Award in recognition of the outstanding contribution it has made to improve road safety.

The website (www.aroundthecorner.org.uk) carries text written by police motorcyclists for their fellow motorbike enthusiasts and provides vital riding tips, information on local road conditions, weather and route maps.

By visiting the website, motorcyclists planning a particular journey can check on local conditions and source relevant information from a reliable source.

Around the Corner started as a successful initiative which played a significant part in reducing the number of motorcyclists killed and seriously injured in the Borders.

With the backing of the Association of Chief Police Officers in Scotland (ACPOS), Lothian and Borders Police developed it into a format which could be supported and adopted by all Scottish forces.

Lothian and Borders Police Road Safety co-ordinator Sandy Allan said: “Around the Corner was devised to tackle what is a significant road safety issue.

“While the number of people being killed and seriously injured on our road network is declining, this is not the case for motorcyclists.

“The number of motorcyclists coming to harm continues to be above an acceptable level.More traditional ways of trying to deal with this problem had failed and we decided to change our approach.

“The skills of police motorcyclists are highly regarded by the biker community and our motorcyclists started visiting recognised biker ‘stops’ across the area to share their skills, pass on local knowledge and encourage safe riding.

“This award recognises the significant work undertaken and ongoing by Lothian and Borders Police to extend this unique initiative across the country to the benefit of our motorcycling fraternity.”

Sergeant Kenny Brown, of Lothian and Borders Police motorcycle section, added: “Research highlighted our target audience was computer literate and, as a result, the website was born. It is updated on a regular basis, informing riders of any issues, riding tips to improve observations and anticipations leading to an overall increase in safer riding, weather updates, road conditions, roads works and a variety of other useful information.

“The website gives bikers the best possible start to any planned run – information direct from a local professional and biking enthusiast.”

The website was created, designed, developed and is continually updated by the Corporate Communication Dept of Lothian and Borders Police.

The award was presented on Prince Michael’s behalf by Lord Robertson, chairman of the Commission for Road Safety.