Heads Up Halifax is a campaign designed to help raise awareness about the responsibility shared by drivers, cyclists, and pedestrians when it comes to crossing the street safely. It was recommended by the Crosswalk Safety Advisory Committee (CSAC) and launched in 2014 (Regional Council has since dissolved CSAC given that its work as outlined in the terms of reference was complete).
In 2016, Heads Up Halifax messages focused on reminding people to make eye contact with drivers, pedestrians, or cyclists when approaching a crosswalk to ensure they are seen and their intentions understood. No assumptions. No surprises. Other specific actions related to safe crosswalk behaviour include:
Heads Up Halifax also brought attention to Crosswalk Safety Awareness Day on November 15, which encouraged people to share on social media their actions and tips for staying safe at crosswalks. The municipality promoted these initiatives through bus boards, print ads, and digital media using extensive paid and organic social media placements.
To measure the effectiveness of Heads Up Halifax, the municipality completes post-campaign surveys:
|2016 results||2015 results||2014 results|
Survey results for 2016 are consistent with past campaigns in that a majority of respondents consider traffic safety a key issue for the municipality, although public awareness of any communications relating to traffic safety has notably declined over the past year (down to 52% in 2016 from 71% in 2015). While there is still strong public support for the Heads Up Halifax campaign, there is limited public awareness of the campaign, with back-of-the bus advertising generating the greatest recall.
While using a social media campaign did not increase campaign awareness, it provided the first opportunity to measure specific actions taken by those who did see and engage the online campaign.
Here are some high level insights from the social media campaign:
The municipality will continue to fine-tune Heads up Halifax to increase awareness and recall while developing ways to increase participation, engagement and promotion to make crosswalks safer for everyone.