The devastating consequences of driving too fast on country roads is highlighted in a new campaign urging drivers to watch their speed and help save lives.
Over half of all fatal accidents in Scotland happen on country roads.
Last year alone, 649 people were killed or seriously injured whilst driving on country roads and more than two thirds of those were men.
The powerful campaign from the Scottish Government and Road Safety Scotland targets young male drivers aged 22-40, who have a higher risk of being involved in a crash.
An emotional TV advert follows a fictional character losing control of his car – and losing his life – on a country road with the strapline: “Don’t miss what’s round the corner. Watch your speed on country roads.”
Poignant interview footage with members of the emergency services will also feature in the campaign, as they open up about how the tragedies on Scotland’s country roads affect their lives too.
The footage will encourage people to re-think their driving behaviour and emphasise the massive impact every life lost has on so many people.
Humza Yousaf, Minister for Transport, said: “We are committed to achieving safer road travel in Scotland and whilst we have seen a 16 per cent decline in fatalities on country roads in the last year, every life lost is one too many.
“The campaign shows the true consequences of driving at inappropriate speeds on country roads.
“You just don’t know what is round the corner, and motorists need to realise they aren’t invincible and that it could happen to them.
“We want every driver to take note and to encourage them to drive at an appropriate speed for the conditions.”
Chief Superintendent Andy Edmonston of Police Scotland added: “Loss of control is the biggest cause of deaths on country roads, and this is often a result of driving too fast for the conditions and leaving too little time to react to unpredictable road conditions and hazards.
“We are urging drivers to take extra care on country roads, including those that they travel on frequently as you can never be sure what’s round the corner.
“We hope this new campaign will contribute to a reduction of deaths on Scotland’s roads.”
Scotland rugby player, Stuart Hogg, is supporting the campaign as, tragically, he lost his best friend, Richard Wilkinson, in a crash on a country road.
Stuart said: “The loss of Richard had a massive impact on my life and he’s missed out on so many things. I’m now a dad and play rugby for Scotland and I know he would be proud of me. I just can’t help wishing he was around to share these moments.
“The country roads campaign is so important to me personally and I hope that by speaking about my experience, it will help save other young lives and also honour Richard’s memory.”
For more information log on to dontriskit.info or check out the Road Safety Scotland Facebook and Twitter (@roadsafetyscot) pages.
The advert is available to view here.