VIDEO: Mr. Bean features in unique Mayo road safety campaign

A VIDEO clip of Mr. Bean is being used in a road safety campaign launched by the road safety department of Mayo County Council.

Road safety officials are urging drivers: 'Don't drive like Mr. Bean - drive safely and focus on your driving'.

Tiger Aspect productions UK has issued the council's road safety office a licence to use the video clip and image of Mr. Bean for this unique awareness campaign.

As schools and colleges reopen after the Christmas break we will experience the roads getting busy again and with such shocking figures on our roads in 2016 we all need to think road safety.

The local authority has organised this campaign, which uses the video clip of fictional character Mr. Bean driving distracted, to engage with the public to get a road safety message across. Road safety may be a serious topic, but that doesn’t mean it can’t benefit from a bit of humour from time to time.

Humour not only helps messages stand out, relevant humour reduces the 'counter-argument part of the brain' - that part of people’s brains where they immediately start building arguments about why they are not going to do something, so people are more accepting of a message.

Recent publications by the RSA highlight that driver distraction is thought to play a role in 20 - 30% of all road collisions. One of the main form of driver distractions is the mobile phone.

Here's some things to think about:

Texting - one of many things that can distract an unwary driver.

Car mats – if not secured properly, they can become wedged under the pedals. Leaning down and trying to reposition the mats with your hands or pushing them out of the way with your feet while driving is not a clever idea.

Seat position - trying to manually adjust the seat position while on the move can result in a loss of control.

Mirrors - make a quick check that their positions have not been altered since your last spell behind the wheel, and readjust as required.

Settings - tune in the audio system, sort out your iPod/USB connection, set your destination and pair in your phone before the trip begins.

Secure gear - make sure anything placed in the vehicle is secure and not likely to move. If something has moved and is annoying you, pull over and sort it out.

Food and drink - be organised. Trying to unravel a sandwich from its wrapper or take a hot pie out of its paper bag is a great way to lose concentration. Make sure the cup holders are free to do their job and are not being used to store loose change and/or keys, creating instability that can cause that hot coffee to spill.

Rubbish - Keep a small rubbish bag handy to dispose of any waste. It avoids the car floor being used as a dumping ground and creating a distraction if items such as bottles roll under the driver's feet.

Children - as best you can, make sure the young ones don't have to ask for something while travelling that is not within their reach. Turning around to find or pass on a favourite toy is a definite no-no.

Footwear - removing uncomfortable or potentially dangerous footwear before driving is a sensible thing to do. But it kicked off and left to roll around in the driver's foot-well, it can easily become a hazard and create problems similar to a loose floor mat.

Headlights and wipers - worn wiper rubbers and misaligned headlights can cause a driver to miss-read the conditions, and poorly-aimed headlights can dazzle and distract on-coming drivers.