Councils across the Black Country will be launching a road safety campaign to encourage young drivers to put safety of themselves and passengers first while on the road.

The campaign will be launched around Valentine’s Day with the focus on looking out for the ‘one you love’ - be it a girlfriend, boyfriend, friends or family members.   
The campaign encourages young drivers to take responsibility for their passengers and seek to encourage passengers to speak out if they find themselves in a situation in a vehicle in which they feel uncomfortable. 

On 14 February, 2020 road safety officers from City of Wolverhampton Council will launch the campaign with a display of 116 red roses at Wolverhampton College, Paget Road Campus.  

Each red rose will represent one of the 116 young people aged 17 to 24 that has been killed or seriously injured in the West Midlands within a 12 month period as either passengers or drivers of a vehicle.  

The display will provide a visual impact which captures the attention of the students allowing the opportunity for engaging discussion about driver behaviour and coping strategies which passengers could adopt, should they find themselves in a situation where they don’t feel comfortable. 

There will also be an opportunity for students to talk to firefighters from West Midlands Fire Service. As well as the use virtual reality headsets to look at the effects of distractions on their driving along with the impacts of making the wrong and right decisions when behind the wheel.   

Councillor Steve Evans, Cabinet Member for City Environment at City of Wolverhampton Council said: “It’s shocking to see the amount of people that have been seriously injured and lost their lives on our roads. We recognise something needs to be done to tackle this Black Country wide issue to reduce road incidents and anti social behaviour. 

“I’m pleased we are supporting this campaign together with our neighbouring local authorities across the Black Country to protect the lives of our residents and visitors. 

“I strongly encourage the young people out there to pay attention to the road and to speak up if you feel uncomfortable. We do not want any more young lives lost on our roads that could be avoided.”