Heads up is a road safety campaign by Newcastle City Council and Northumbria Police to tackle the number of pedestrian accidents in the city centre. The campaign uses #distracted to raise awareness of the dangers of not paying attention when crossing the road. 

The joint campaign was launched in May 2015 after rising figures show that the biggest cause of accidents in the city centre was failure to look properly when crossing the road – usually through distractions such as mobile phones or listening to music through headphones. 

It forms part of Northumbria Police's Road Safety Operation Dragoon which is aimed at keeping the roads safe for everyone. 


Phase 1 of the campaign was targeted at young people aged 18-22 (the biggest age group affected), the campaign used bus shelter advertising in hotspot locations across the city centre and social media. 
Phase 2 will be launched in August 2015 and aims to alert drivers to the hazards caused by pedestrians not paying attention when crossing the road. 
From 2009-2013, there were 368 pedestrian accidents in the city-centre. Of these casualties, 306 were slightly injured, 61 were seriously injured and one was killed. 61% of accidents were caused by pedestrians stepping on to the road without looking. 

The #distracted campaign is part of a number of initiatives with partners to make Newcastle safer. These include using engineering to design out accident blackspots and calm traffic, safer and improved junctions and pedestrian crossings, educational and awareness programmes with schools, colleges, universities and with commercial drivers such as bus operators and taxi companies. 

There is also a wider fiver year transport plan to improve the city’s infrastructure to make Newcastle more pedestrian friendly, better for cycling and to ensure public transport services have more reliable routes. 
Heads up! #distracted
Heads up! #distracted

Page last updated: 
24 February 2016
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