West Berkshire Council has been working with Safer Roads Berkshire* to create ‘Get your Coat’, a useful free phone app which provides ‘intelligent travel planning’ to help you get home safely after a night out.
The app allows users to choose a designated driver in advance from their contacts. When the time comes to leave, a press of a button will send an automated message including the user’s location, to the driver saying that the user is ready to be picked up.
Other functions includes the ability to store a preferred taxi number and/or search for local taxi companies. It also features a useful countdown function which sounds an alarm 30 minutes before your train or bus.
A drinks tracker is also included to help drivers be aware of how much alcohol is likely to be in their system. The tracker also reminds the user when they have reached their ‘recommended daily or weekly allowance of alcohol’.
Jeanette Clifford, Executive Member for Highways and Transport, said: “West Berkshire’s award-winning Road Safety Team keep on coming up with great ideas – and this latest one is really something special. Perhaps ‘Get Your Coat’ will interest you because of an experience you’ve had yourself – or perhaps you’ve been that parent watching the clock tick slowly past one, when your teenage daughter said she’d be in at midnight. Whatever the case, many of us know that it’s all too easy, in the excitement and pleasure of a good night out, to overlook the practicalities – the time of the last bus home or the phone number of your preferred taxi company. But with this app to hand, you can dance ’til dawn, enjoy a drink with friends old and new, make the most of our great pubs and restaurants – and still be sure to get home safe and sound. I encourage everyone to download ‘Get Your Coat’. It’s already on my phone, but more importantly, I’ll be asking members of my family to put it on theirs too.”
Cheryl Evans, senior road safety officer at West Berkshire Council, said: “We are delighted to be able to provide this unique app with the continued support of so many different partners across different sectors.
“The app combines different health and safety aspects to provide people with the tools to keep themselves safe, and also to direct them to support should things not go to plan.
“The app is also being incorporated onto various national and local websites including Alcohol Concern and Reading Festival. This has been a massive boost to getting it out there with the aim to keep everyone safe on a night out.”
*The Berkshire Safer Roads Partnership comprises the unitary authorities of West Berkshire, Bracknell, Slough, Wokingham and Windsor & Maidenhead.