Be Safe Be Seen

04 May 2016

With winter nearing, road users are urged to take steps to be seen easily.

Be Safe, Be Seen is a region-wide campaign promoting the use of lights and hi-visibility clothing during the autumn and winter months.

Manager Transportation Carl Whittleston says staff from New Plymouth District Council, Shell Todd Oil Service and the police will be on the streets in New Plymouth, Opunake, Hawera and Eltham with a chocolate treat for those walkers, runners and cyclists who use lights or are wearing high-viz gear.

“For those who don’t, we’ll give them a bright backpack cover, a reflective armband or front and rear bike lights so they can be more easily seen on our roads and footpaths,” he says.

“We’ll also have hi-viz backpack covers available for free from the Civic Centre in New Plymouth during May.”

Mr Whittleston says people should never assume they have been seen by other road users. “It’s for our own safety that we make it easy for others to spot us in low-light conditions or when a low sun is in drivers’ eyes, and that drivers check twice to make sure the road ahead of them is clear,” he says.

The campaign is supported by Shell Todd Oil Services, New Plymouth Police, New Plymouth injurySafe and Roadsafe Taranaki.

Safety tips for road users

Drivers: think twice and look ahead when driving into sunstrike or sections of heavy shading on the road. Look twice to make sure there isn’t a child waiting at a pedestrian crossing or a cyclist ahead of you in the light.

Cyclists: when cycling at night or when visibility is poor, bicycles must have the following:

  • One or more steady or flashing rear-facing red lights that can be seen at night from 100m away.
  • One or two white or yellow headlights that can be seen at night from 100m away. Only one of these headlights may flash.
  • Pedal retro-reflectors on the forward and rearward facing surfaces of each pedal. If the cycle does not have these, the cyclist must be wearing reflective material.

There are $55 fines for bikes with no lights, no tail lights or no red reflectors or tapes.