Govt Urged to Act After Rise in Road Deaths

The government has been urged to take strong and swift action as new data reveals the first annual rise in UK road deaths since 2003. Road safety groups such as the Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents, Brake and the Institute of Advanced Motorists (IAM) say this is a clear indication that tougher action needs to be taken by ministers to make Britain’s roads safer.

According to the Department for Transport, . Although there were reductions in deaths and serious injuries in some categories – fatalities for bus and coach occupants fell by 22 per cent, while there was a ten per cent drop in deaths for motorcyclists and a four per cent fall for cyclists – car occupant deaths rose by six per cent and the number of pedestrians losing their lives rose by 12 per cent.

“Britain has been at the top of the world road safety league, but a combination of public spending cuts and lack of central targets may be putting this in jeopardy,” said IAM director of policy and research Neil Greig.

“The 2011 figures show that saving lives on our roads can never be taken for granted and with human error still the top cause of crashes, education and training must take centre stage in the future.”

From a motorcyclist’s point of view, the ten per cent fall in road deaths may appear encouraging, but the statistics reveal this was accompanied by a ten per cent increase in serious injuries and an eight per cent increase in overall biker casualties.

As one the most vulnerable groups of road users, motorcyclists should perhaps take extra precautions in light of this new data. Statistical analysis shows that bike accidents are more common in some areas of the UK than in others, and to highlight these trouble spots.

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