I was delighted to read that those iconic Goodyear Blimps will be making a return to the skies over the UK over the course of this year. Goodyear tell us that they have a vision of road safety being a shared responsibility, and they wish to reinforce this message with the 2011 Goodyear Safety Tour – the first flights over this country for more than 10 years. From March until October, they say, two of the famous airships, named Spirit of Safety I and II, will visit 20 European countries to underline the tyre giant’s role in improving road safety.
The Goodyear Blimps first took to the skies 85 years ago, establishing a reputation for themselves as ‘guardian angels’ for the company, and symbolising the work of Goodyear’s innovation centres to reduce the number of road accidents across the globe.
Goodyear brand director Hugues Despres, says: “The Goodyear Blimp will take the lead on a number of road safety initiatives as it becomes the focal point for Goodyear’s consumer based activities and events. As it tours the skies of Europe, the Goodyear Safety Tour will allow us to communicate our drive for safety and provide us with a platform to promote our advances in tyre technology that has ensured safety for drivers and their families – and for the environment in which we live.”
Over the last decade, Goodyear Blimps have been ‘on tour’ around the globe, including the USA and China, but this tour marks the first European tour since 1999.
One word of warning, though. Whereas we applaud any initiative that seeks to bring road safety a higher profile, we urge you not to be distracted if you’re on the road when you see a Blimp. After all, there’s little use to a Safety Tour if all it does is cause accidents.