Car manufacturer launches think before you drive campaign

UK car manufacturer, KIA, has become the first motor company to acknowledge the need to change attitudes to car use by launching its environmental and social campaign, ‘Think Before You Drive’.

The campaign is designed to encourage individual responsibility for driving patterns, and to promote integrated transport solutions that reduce dependence on motoring. The project involves four practical activities, which, it hopes, will start to change attitudes amongst industry, consumers and the media.

In collaboration with the Daily Express and the Pedestrians Association, KIA has created a system of ‘walking bus’ routes (see related story), giving parents the opportunity for their children to walk to school under adult supervision. The campaign is also aimed at being the first step in reversing the trend for children to be driven to school.

In an attempt to cut down on car use for journeys of under one mile in which the driver is the only passenger, and provide a healthy and environmentally friendly alternative, KIA is offering a hybrid mountain bike as standard with every KIA Sedona sold.

The third part of the campaign, ‘Walking the Way to Health’, is run by the British Heart Foundation and the Countryside Agency, and seeks to improve the health and fitness of over a million people throughout a five year period. Finally, the KIA/RAC Risk Avoidance Programme involves a driving course designed to raise awareness of the hazards of the road, and to cut down on the 65% of road accidents caused by human error, and is given free with every KIA Carens sold.

“The motoring industry must take responsibility not only for the products they sell but the lifestyle they promote,” said KIA Cars (UK) Managing Director, Mark Quinn. “As a society it is all of our individual responsibilities to look at how we behave and the impacts that we have, small changes by many people can make a huge difference. I hope our efforts make some people think and, where possible, that it encourages them to get out of their driving seat and onto their feet.”

“The British Heart Foundation and the Countryside Agency must be congratulated for creating Walking the Way to Health, a programme that will deliver tangible benefits for so many people to reconsider how they go about their lives, to look at how their transport decisions effect them and those around them.”

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