Committee decides on smart motorway education

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A committee looking at how all-lane running schemes have been working has decided to review the distances between emergency rescue areas (ERAs). The decision has been welcomed by the RAC.

All-lane running motorways sees hard-shoulders either permanently converted into extra lanes or partially used as part of managed schemes.

As well as reviewing the distances between ERAs, the committee has decided to push a public information campaign focusing on educating motorists about how to drive on smart motorways.

The RAC, which has consistently raised concerns over the distances between ERAs on all-lane running stretches of motorway, said it is "extremely good news for motorists' safety" that the issue is being reviewed.

An RAC survey of motorists who had broken down on all-lane running stretches of the M25 found that just over a two fifths (42%) knew ERAs existed.

What's more, just over a quarter (28%) of those surveyed said they could see an ERA from where they had broken down.

The RAC's head of external affairs, Pete Williams, commented: "Clearly this indicates that better signage of ERAs should be a priority on existing and future stretches of smart motorways."

Williams added that as figures revealed nearly one in 10 (8%) drivers ignored red 'X's indicating motorway lane closure, a public information programme about smart motorway driving is "clearly needed."

"Every step should be taken to ensure that motorways do not lose their status as the UK's safest roads," he said.

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