'Sorry Mate I Didn't See You' - Easter road safety campaign launched across North Yorkshire

A new road safety campaign is being launched across North Yorkshire ahead of the busy Easter weekend.
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Sorry Mate I Didn’t See you (SMIDSY) is a phrase commonly heard by motorcyclists who have come to an abrupt halt when a vehicle pulls out in front of them.

Police say these incidents are one of the leading causes of motorcycle collisions and ‘SMIDSY’ moments are the focus of a new national police campaign which North Yorkshire Police will be taking part in over the Easter weekend.

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In North Yorkshire, the policing operation which supports the campaign will run from Friday March 29 to Monday April 1 and will see officers work proactively with motorcyclists to try and prevent any ‘SMIDSY’ incidents.

Police are launching a SMIDSY - Sorry Mate I Didn't See You - road safety campaign over Easter weekend.Police are launching a SMIDSY - Sorry Mate I Didn't See You - road safety campaign over Easter weekend.
Police are launching a SMIDSY - Sorry Mate I Didn't See You - road safety campaign over Easter weekend.

Motorcyclists are some of the most vulnerable road users, featuring disproportionately in road collisions in the UK.

The most recent combined data from the DFT and National Road Traffic Census from 2021 reveals that 310 motorcyclists lost their lives and 5,264 were seriously injured on Britain’s roads.

Five-year data from 2016 to 2021 on reported road casualties cites failing to look properly on the part of a rider or driver as the most common contributing factor in fatal or serious collisions.

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The data also reveals that T, Y or staggered junctions are the most common locations of motorcyclist casualties, representing 34.7% of combined fatalities and injuries.

North Yorkshire Police will be reminding all road users on how to ride responsibly on the roads and, where necessary, this will involve enforcement.

Officer will be using an unmarked H2 Kawasaki road bike equipped with blue lights, a siren and a 4K camera which will be used to secure evidence, as well several police bikes and cars, some of which will be marked and some unmarked, as well as safety camera vans on key routes across the county.

Officers and police volunteers will also be using an engagement trailer at well-known hotspots to talk to riders about their ride preparation and behaviour on the road network.

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Insp Clive Turner from the force’s Roads Policing Group, said: “North Yorkshire is home to two national parks as well as 6000 miles of road.

"We want people to enjoy travelling here but not at the expense of other road users.

“Engagement is a key part of this Easter’s operation but where necessary we will use enforcement to prosecute as dangerous driving or riding is not acceptable.

“Sadly, my team and I are familiar with the devastating consequences that are caused by serious and fatal road traffic collisions.

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"We will deploy on this operation with the mindset of doing everything that we can to ensure that everyone who is on the county’s road network this Easter goes home safely.

“I would urge riders and drivers to think about their behaviour and what changes they could make to improve their own safety and that of other road users.”

The Ride Craft Hub – www.ridecrafthub.org – will become a home for sharing pro rider tips from the best riders in the country.

A guide to spotting a SMIDSY has been provided by charity DocBike, who work to eradicate motorcycle deaths.