Pirelli is supporting the Fédération Internationale de l'Automobile’s (FIA) powerful Golden Rules for road safety – part of its high-profile #3,500LIVES campaign designed to help cut the number of fatal road accidents.
The chilling statistic that 3,500 people die on the road every day has sparked the initiative and Pirelli, as a global partner of the FIA Action for Road Safety campaign, will harness the power of both its technology and its networks, based on its employees around the world, to help promote the rules.
Raising awareness is key to changing attitudes to road safety
“As a tyre maker, historically active in the automotive and motorsport arena, we have always believed road safety goes hand-in-hand with our commitment to produce the most technologically advanced tyres,” says Filippo Bettini, Pirelli’s head of sustainability and risk governance. “Raising awareness is key to changing attitudes to road safety. It is crucial to send out the right message in the most efficient way, especially when you want to talk to the young generation.”
The FIA’s Golden Rules cover a collection of well-researched safety advice: obey the speed limit, never drink and drive, use a child safety seat, always pay attention, buckle up, don’t text and drive, stop when you’re tired, wear a helmet, check your tyres, stay bright and check your vision.
The #3,500LIVES campaign
The #3,500LIVES campaign was launched at the FIA’s headquarters in the Place de la Concorde, Paris, with the unveiling of a giant billboard measuring 218m2. The message was clear: “#3500 lives, aujourd’hui, 3,500 personnes vont mourir sur la route”. It includes a partner campaign with ambassadors who support the FIA Golden Rules.
It is part of the UN Decade of Action for Road Safety 2011-2020, which is designed to educate road users about the importance of respecting the rules of the road in a bid to save lives. Of the 3,500 people who die on the road each day, 500 are children. Road crashes, according to the World Health Organisation, are the number one killer of people aged between 15 and 29.
Of the 3,500 people who die on the road each day, 500 are children
Alexandre Gueschir, marketing and events director of the FIA, which governs many of the world’s leading motorsports and has 245 national motoring organisations under its wing, says the figures demand action. “Road safety is a clear priority for the FIA,” he explains. “When you represent more than 80 million drivers and know that more than 1.2 million people are killed in road accidents every year, you can’t avoid being heavily involved.”
A global safety message supported by motorsport
Motorsport, the FIA believes, is a perfect vehicle for getting the safety message across as it provides a model for what can be achieved. “Over the past 30 years, motorsport has demonstrated that it’s possible to massively reduce the number of accidents by acting on driver behaviour, the cars and the infrastructure,” Gueschir says.
Pirelli is committed to a raft of road safety initiatives – from setting up training courses to developing compelling point-of-sale information – that will increase consumer knowledge about the fundamentals of road safety. As the FIA’s road safety partner, Pirelli is initiating 158 safe driving projects this year that will be channelled through the association’s clubs around the world.
The company also has a major ongoing commitment to train international dealers on the importance of the tyre in road safety – and especially the performance differences between winter, summer and all-season tyres. Last year more than 900 classroom training sessions were held for dealers around the world and there were more than 22,000 participants.
Road safety is embedded in Pirelli’s wider commitment to future and sustainable mobility. There is a key role for products that are safer for people and for the environment, in particular technology that makes it easier for consumers to check and monitor the performance of their tyres.
Technology and safe performance are in our DNA
It is indeed in the field of tyre technology and innovation that Pirelli has a unique contribution to make. “Technology and safe performance are in our DNA,” says Bettini. “We have launched Pirelli Connesso, a platform that connects a sensor in the tyre with the driver’s smartphone or device, which will be a major step forward in road safety.”
The sensor can pick up information about ground conditions – is it icy or wet? – and tyre wear, pressure and temperature. Alerts are sent to the driver if there is a risk of a puncture, skidding or aquaplaning, or if a tyre needs to be inflated or replaced. All of which should contribute to a significant reduction in the likelihood of road accidents.
But until the technology is widely used, Bettini has one piece of road safety advice that is also an FIA Golden Rule: “Check your tyres.”
FIA’s Golden Rules for road safety
Obey the speed limit
Never drink and drive
Use a child safety seat
Always pay attention
Don’t text and drive
Stop when you’re tired
Wear a helmet
Check your tyres
Check your vision