THINK! country roads

Dept of Transport Guidance

THINK! country roads

Published 21 October 2014


  1. Introduction
  2. Campaign activity
  3. Core messages
  4. Useful links


60% of fatal road accidents occur on country roads. In 2013, 1,070 people were killed on country roads, nearly 11 times higher than on motorways.

THINK! research shows that drivers underestimate the risks of country roads – they are seen as the ‘fun’ part of driving and many drivers become complacent on roads they are familiar with. The most common contributory factor for these casualties is loss of control resulting from poor observation and planning, too high an entry speed into the bend and driving too fast for the conditions.

2.Campaign activity

If you could see video

The ‘If you could see’ campaign is aimed at all drivers with a particular focus on young male drivers as they represent the largest number of killed or seriously injured collisions on country roads, where speed was a contributory factor in the collision. Our objective is to motivate drivers to reduce their speed on 50 and 60 mph country roads – particularly at bends – in order to stay in control, by:

  • increasing drivers’ perceived risk of country roads and bends on country roads
  • increasing the salience of potential hazards on country roads
  • getting drivers to brake before the bend, not on it

The campaign uses 3D scanning technology to illustrate that country roads are full of hidden hazards. This innovative visual technique allows viewers to ‘see’ through the bends on a country road and spot the unforeseen dangers ahead. The message for drivers is that, in the real world, you can’t see the dangers that may lie behind a bend so it’s always best to slow down and give yourself time to react (brake before the bend, not on it).

The media runs from 9 October to end November in England and Wales on:

  • cinema screens
  • video on demand (catch up TV services e.g. 4OD, ITV Player etc) and online video
  • radio
  • petrol station screens
  • Twitter

3.Core messages

The core messages are:

  • 60% of road fatalities occur on country roads
  • country roads are full of hidden hazards
  • if you could see the danger through the bend, you’d slow down
  • THINK! Brake before the bend, not on it

The new THINK! campaign urges drivers using country roads to:

  • read the road ahead and anticipate potential hazards
  • drive at a speed that allows you to stop in the distance you can see to be clear
  • stay in control and give yourself time to react by braking before a bend, not on it
  • give cyclists and horse riders plenty of space when overtaking

The full advice for drivers on the THINK! country roads website. You can also find out about collisions in your local area and speed limits