SHOCKED motorists in Wigan watched on as firefighters and volunteers acted out real-time road traffic rescues as part of a safety campaign.
The Greater Manchester Fire and Rescue Service has launched the Fatal Distraction campaign in support of the United Nations Decade of Action for Road Safety, aimed at reducing injuries on the roads.
As part of the campaign, crews were in Wigan town centre, re-enacting the aftermath of traffic accidents to shock people into adopting safer driving habits.
Figures from the fire service reveal that from the beginning of May 2010 to the end of April 2011, there were 71 road traffic collisions (RTCs) in the Wigan borough, which included three fatalities.
A total of 27 people had to be extricated from their cars, while there were two deaths.
Two people were recommended to have a precautionary check, 10 victims went to hospital with a serious injury, 12 went to hospital with a slight injury and one person was rescued without any injury.
Of those who were not extricated, there was one fatality, nine people were given first aid at the scene and four were told to have a precautionary check. Two victims went to hospital with a serious injury and 11 victims went to hospital with a slight injury.
One person was rescued without any injury, whilst another was rescued with an injury.
There were 24 incidents without rescue or injury.
In Greater Manchester there were 793 RTCs in the same period.
The aim of the campaign is to drive down these figures through educating drivers and their passengers on the harsh realities of bad driving habits, such as not wearing a seat belt, using a mobile phone, smoking and speeding.
Peter O’Reilly, director of prevention and protection at the fire service, said: “By raising drivers’ awareness we hope people really think about the consequences of their actions.
“Our aim is to continue to put across a firm message to help drive down the number of people injured on our roads and do everything we can to support the UN Decade of Action for Road Safety over the next 10 years.”