Thousands attend free road safety event at Northamptonshire circuit

The Open Roads event at Rockingham racing circuit
The Open Roads event at Rockingham racing circuit
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More than 3,000 visitors attended a free road safety event organised by Northamptonshire Police and Northamptonshire Fire and Rescue Service in Corby.

The Open Roads day involved more than 30 activities, stands and demonstrations, including examples of what takes place during Police pursuits, a display of modified and supercars, an array of motorbikes on show, and activities for children, such as the chance to climb onto a real fire engine at Rockingham racing circuit.

Firefighters from Northamptonshire Fire and Rescue Service ran simulated rescue demonstrations involving each of the emergency services to show onlookers just how the services work together to deal with road accidents.

Former World Motocross Champion and James Bond precision stunt driver Jamie Dobb and international motorcycle racer Peter Hickman showcased their skills as part of an advanced biker course run by the Institute of Advanced Motorcyclists.

Peter said: “It has been really good to see that interaction between the public and police and to witness what the emergency services go through to do their job.

“There are a good few messages I hope people will pick up from the day.

“I also hope people will think more about what can happen when things go wrong on the roads.

“Often we feel safe in cars, but we are really in a tin box.

“It is important for people not to get too complacent.”

Highlights of the day included a lorry experience, run by Maxim Logistics, which enabled people to have a go at driving a lorry around the circuit near Corby.

The aim of this was to educate people about the dangers posed by blind spots.

The day also involved motorcycle safety sessions and CarKraft taster sessions for young drivers, including driving experiences such as skid training in Renault cars.

Other attractions included driving simulators, the police helicopter and various interactive exhibits.

It was hoped that the event would be a fun day out for families, non-drivers and drivers, young and old, but the motivation for the day was also to help cut the number of people being killed or injured on county roads.

During 2015, 32 people died in collisions in this county.

Gemma Rutland, community engagement officer for the joint Safer Roads Team (Northamptonshire Police and Northamptonshire Fire and Rescue Service), said: “We were really pleased so many people turned out to today’s event at Rockingham Circuit.

“The activities we planned were about providing entertaining displays for the public, but they were also about getting vital safety messages across to drivers, bikers, cyclists and non-drivers.

“We hope visitors enjoyed themselves and learned a lot from the event.”