Motoring organisation the AA has launched its Think Bikes wing mirror sticker campaign to remind drivers to look out for cyclists and motorbike riders, and to break down the ‘two tribes’ mentality that exists between road users.
The AA, with support of Olympic gold medallist Chris Boardman and Isle of Man TT legend John McGuinness, launched the campaign this morning in central London. One million sets of unobtrusive wing mirrors stickers prompting drivers to double check for two-wheeled traffic will be distributed to motorists. According to road casualty statistics, quoted by the AA, a failure to look properly is cited as the most common cause of accidents.
British Cycling welcomed the AA initiative.
The campaign has been launched after an AA survey of more than 17,500 drivers found that 93 percent sometimes found it hard to see cyclists and more than half admit to being surprised when a ‘cyclists appears from nowhere’.
However, more than half of the survey group also said cyclists were inconsiderate road users or admitted to carrying a negative perception of cyclists.
President of the AA, Edmund King, said: “The AA Think Bikes campaign is definitely needed when half of drivers are often surprised when a cyclist or motorcyclist ‘appears from nowhere’.
“Those on two wheels never appear from nowhere, so as drivers we need to be more alert to other road users, and this is where our stickers act as a daily reminder. Likewise, riders need to be aware that they may not always be spotted by drivers. We hope that this campaign can reach the parts that other campaigns can’t reach.”
Chris Boardman, British Cycling policy advisor, said: “This move by the AA – Britain’s largest motoring organisation – is a welcome step in creating a culture of mutual respect between all road users. We know that cyclists and drivers are often the same people – nine out of 10 British Cycling members also drive a car. This sticker campaign reflects the importance of looking out for everyone on the road, regardless of what form of transport they use.”
The stickers – two small transfers of a bike and motorbike – will be distributed free in Halfords, by the police, and sent out with annual renewals of AA memberships.