Deaths and serious injuries rise on UK roads

July 1 2015  

Deaths and serious injuries rise on UK roads
Road traffic casualties have increased for the first time since 1997. Official figures show there were 194,477 casualties of all severity reported in Great Britain last year, up 6% on 2013.
The number of people seriously injured in reported road traffic accidents increased by 5% to 22,807 and road deaths went up by 4% to 1775.
Pedestrian fatalities increased by 12% from 398 in 2013 to 446 last year and the number of child casualties was up 6% to 16,727.
The number of pedal cyclists killed rose from 109 two years ago to 113 last year and there was an 8% rise in the number of cyclists seriously injured (3401).
The total number of reported pedal cyclist casualties rose by 9.5% to 21,287, the highest number of cyclist casualties since 1999 and 31% higher since a low in 2007.
The Department for Transport acknowledged that “there is an ever increasing problem with pedal cyclist casualties”. Statisticians say that some of the rising number of pedal cyclist casualties can be explained by the volume of cycle traffic which has gone up 27% since 2007.
Overall, the figures proved even worse than expected according to the Parliamentary Advisory Council for Transport Safety. “This should be a wake up call for the Government and administrations across the UK to take action so that casualties go down, not up,” said executive director David Davies.
“This level of death and injury represents personal tragedies for thousands of families and huge costs to the health service and the British economy. Most of these deaths are preventable. They should not be seen as an acceptable cost of doing business.”
Transport Minister Andrew Jones said: “Britain continues to have some of the safest roads in the world. In 2013 fewer people died on British roads than at any point since records began and last year was the third lowest total on record.
“But behind every statistic is a personal tragedy so we are determined to do more. We are working closely with road safety groups as we consider what more can be done.”
(Photo: West Midlands Police)

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