A new campaign has been launched to try and reduce the number of deaths on rural roads across the north and north-east.
The Scottish Government, in partnership with Road Safety Scotland, has launched the campaign, which urges motorists to watch their speeds while driving in the countryside.
In particular, the campaign is aimed at men aged 22-40, who are at higher risk of being involved in a crash.
In support of the campaign, the government has released figures which reveal the devastating impact of crashes in rural areas.
The figures, obtained from the police, show there were 13 people killed in crashes on country roads in Aberdeenshire and Moray.
During the same period, in the Highlands and Islands, there were 20 people who lost their lives in rural road accidents.
Meanwhile, across Scotland, more than half of fatal crashes take place on country roads.
Police in the north-east say they are committed to reducing collisions on provincial roads through Operation Cedar.
Inspector Ewan Innes, from Aberdeenshire and Moray’s road policing unit, said: “The geography of the north-east of Scotland is such that the majority of journeys are carried out on rural roads which can prove very challenging for motorists, and unfortunately we experience a high number of injury collisions on these routes.
“As the winter closes in and nights get darker, we will continue to look for any and all opportunities to engage with motorists through further operations and days of action. The safety of road users is a top priority for our officers throughout the north-east.”
The campaign is supported by a new advert campaign which will be running on TV and cinema screens, as well as radio and online.
The advert follows a fictional character losing control of his car on a country road, with the strap line, “don’t miss what’s round the corner. watch your speed on country roads”.
Transport minister Derek Mackay added: “We are committed to achieving safer road travel in Scotland for everyone and clearly we are heading in the right direction. However we still have a long way to go, particularly with younger male drivers.
“This campaign encourages motorists in Scotland to drive at an appropriate speed for the conditions, particularly on country roads as there is a higher proportion of fatalities in rural areas.”