Tuesday, 6 December 2011

BBC Logs Every Death On Road In Great Britain For The Last 12 Years

Did you know that the British police force recorded over 3 million road casualties over the last 12 years to 2011?*
According to the report over 36,000 people died and a further 373,985 people were seriously injured. In spite of this the BBC believe that the police report does not reflect the true extent of death and injury on UK roads as many incidents still go unreported.
The BBC claims that "the best official estimate of the total number of people killed and injured in road collisions each year is a massive 730,000."
Rather concerning, especially when you have to consider that the price paid by victims and their families is "inestimable". The annual cost to the economy is huge - between £15 billion - £32 billion.
Other interesting facts highlighted in this report include:
1. The casualty rate for motorbikes is 61 times higher than that for cars and a total of 7,004 bikers and their pillions (passengers) lost their lives between 1999 - 2010. Whilst this might not seem high it's worth considering that motorcyclists only make up 1% of all road traffic.
2. BBC data indicates that 8,242 pedestrians were killed on the road, including 1,279 children, between 1999 - 2010. It's believed that the most dangerous time for pedestrians is during the afternoon rush hour and school closing time.
3. Data also indicates that 1,575 cyclists died on the roads in the 12 years leading up to 2011. Morning and evening rush hours tend to be the most dangerous time for cyclists.
4. A seperate report by South Yorkshire police** indictated that for every fatal collision, there is a one in two chance that the driver responsible has a criminal record. According to the study "white van man" (van drivers) and truckers tend to have the highest number of motoring and criminal offences. Van drivers tend to be the worst for motoring offences with 61% having been convicted, however, lorry drivers top the ranking for highest number of criminal offenders at 41%. The report suggests that by engaging in risky activity, such as crime, appears to indicate a readiness to take further risks whilst driving.
5. Motorways are statistically the safest roads to drive on, according to the BBC's report. This is down to the fact that traffic travels in the same direction on the same side of the road and the difference in speed between vehicles tends to be less than on other roads.
6. A-Roads or "Trunk roads" tend to be more dangerous and BBC data indicates that the death rate is around 1 per mile. Since these tend to be more diverse than motorways, ranging from dual carriageways to city centre roads there are more hazards, resulting in a higher number of collisons. Since many of these roads pass through urban areas with dense traffic, pedestrians and cyclists, the casualty count is generally thought to be significantly higher.
As a result of this the Government have called upon local authorities to take more responsibility for reducing the number of road casualties.
Interestingly enough, out of all the urban areas, Cardiff stands out as one of the lowest for road accidents in the UK. City officials have said that the low figures are down to better road engineering and lower levels of traffic and enforcement.
Other cities in the UK are encouraged to follow Cardiff's example.
To find out more about this report please visit the BBC’s website:
*Source: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-15975720
**Source: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-15975564

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