National Express asks drivers to ‘stay safe, stay back’

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The UK Coach division of National Express Group has partnered with Highways England to support their latest road safety initiative.

The ‘Don’t be a Space Invader – stay safe, stay back’ campaign uses the well-known Space Invader video game character to alert drivers to the anti-social nature and risks of tailgating.

A retro ‘Space Invaders’ poster will feature on 12 coach rears and stickers have been added to bumpers of the remaining 500 plus fleet of vehicles to remind people travelling at speed that tailgating is dangerous.

National Express Chief Executive Officer, Chris Hardy, said: “This is a great opportunity to highlight this important safety issue. As the UK’s largest coach operator, we experience tailgating of our vehicles and fully endorse the message to not be a Space Invader and leave enough space.

“We focus on safe driving through a combination of training and technology and fully support Highways England in urging all road users to not practise this unsafe behaviour.”

One in eight of all road casualties are caused by people who drive too close to the vehicle in front, with more than 100 people killed or seriously injured each year.

While a small minority of tailgating is deliberate, most is unintentional by drivers who are simply unaware they are dangerously invading someone else’s space.

Richard Leonard, Head of Road Safety at Highways England, said: “Tailgating makes the driver in front feel targeted and victimised, distracting their attention from the road ahead and making them more likely to make a mistake.”

“It is intimidating and frightening if you’re on the receiving end. If that leads to a collision, then people in both vehicles could end up seriously injured or killed. We want everyone to travel safely, so the advice is – stay safe, stay back.”

Highways England are sending the Space Invader bumper sticker packs out free for up to four packs, there is also an option for fleet orders. Further information can be found at highwaysengland.co.uk/staysafestayback/.