Police: social media highlighting bad driving

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Police are releasing more information on traffic collisions in the wake of road safety campaigns, including The Royal Gazette’s Drive for Change.

The news came after The Royal Gazette asked about a recent spate of crashes over the space of a few days, including one at Barnes Corner in Southampton last Friday which caused the death of 82-year-old Lois Simmons.

Inspector Robert Cardwell, head of the Bermuda Police Service roads policing unit, said: “I think that the reason for the appearance of more collisions comes down to the various road safety awareness campaigns that have been running.

“Everyone is much more conscious of the problems we are all suffering using the roads. Social media collision reporting may also give the appearance of more collisions.

“Certainly the BPS in its efforts to drive up and assist the awareness campaigns have taken the approach of reporting out on collision with much more regularity and almost as soon as they occur. This is done not only through our press releases but in our own social media streams.”

Mr Cardwell said that crash figures were down compared to the same period last year — there were 18 collisions from May 1 to May 8 compared to 30 collisions in the same period last year.

Mr Cardwell also said there was more interest in bad driving through campaign groups and footage on social media taken mostly by dashboard cameras in private vehicles.

He added: “There are established social media streams using Facebook also reporting out on all of this including Bad Driving Bermuda and Bad Parking Bermuda.

“While the apparent motive of these particular social media streams seems to be to shame they also contribute to awareness and perhaps prevention as you certainly don’t want you and your vehicle featuring on these well-followed sites.”

The RPU released figures on its Twitter page @bps_rpu yesterday that compared police crash statistics from the first four months of this year to the first four months of 2017 and 2016.

The police figures only included crashes reported to police or where police attended

There were 254 collisions reported to police for the first four months of this year compared to 395 for the same period last year and 434 collisions for the first four months in 2016.

The Bermuda Hospitals Board reports all crashes where victims need hospital treatment.

BHB recently reported that from January 1 to March 31 of this year there were 355 victims who needed Emergency Department treatment after a crash.

BHB’s figures also showed that 1,690 people needed Emergency Department treatment in 2017 as a result of crashes, with 28 admitted to intensive care and 111 to an acute ward.

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Published May 10, 2018 at 8:00 am (Updated May 10, 2018 at 7:03 am)

Police: social media highlighting bad driving

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