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Brake challenges government to work towards zero road deaths

Thursday 16th July 2015

At a parliamentary reception held at the House of Commons on 14 July, road safety charity Brake set out its vision for a future “free of the needless trauma of road death and injury”.

Julie Townsend, Brake deputy chief executive, told an audience of new and returning MPs that, following the first annual increase in road casualties of all severities in 17 years, the time has come for the government to reinstate ambitious casualty reduction targets – with the ultimate goal of reducing deaths and serious injuries on UK roads to zero.

Brake and long-time campaign partners Direct Line Insurance used the event to publish a report summarising the key findings from more than a decade of surveys of 1,000 drivers which examine driver attitudes, knowledge and behaviour in relation to safe driving, from fitness to drive to breaking traffic laws.

The report shows that the proportion of respondents who admitted to driving after one alcoholic drink (32% in 2013/51% in 2003), using a mobile phone (45% in 2013/54% in 2006), and speeding (57% in 2015/88% in 2004) have all fallen.

The policies that Brake is advocating to reduce casualties include: a “zero-tolerance drink drive limit” of 20mg alcohol per 100ml of blood; greater priority given to traffic policing and increased penalties for mobile phone use and speeding; a system of graduated driver licensing to allow new drivers to learn in a safer and more structured environment; and a “default urban speed limit of 20mph”.

Julie Townsend said: “We often hear that the UK has among the safest roads in the world. Yet after years of progress in bringing down casualties, figures for 2014 have revealed the first annual increase for 17 years.

“People on foot and bike – those travelling via the healthiest, least polluting and harmful means – have borne the brunt of the recent increase in casualties.

“In fact, if you travel by foot or bike in the UK you are far more likely to be killed or injured than in many of our European neighbours.

“There is far more we can do to make our roads as safe as they can be, where no one must pay the ultimate price for getting around.

“Global research and experience shows that measures like graduated driver licensing, 20mph limits and a lower drink drive limit are effective in preventing loss of life, and making our streets and communities safer, more pleasant places.

“We are appealing to the government to respond to the rise in casualties and seize the opportunity of preparing a new road safety strategy, by making clear that ultimately, we should be moving towards zero road deaths and injuries and ensuring everyone can get around without fear or threat.”

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Brake might as well challenge government to make it stop raining on Wimbledon tennis.

I would suggest educating all drivers, starting with new ones, in showing and describing in detail the consequences of rash behaviour, distraction and understanding mass and inertia involved in a vehicle out of control, emphasising the need for consideration for all other road users in the process, stopping distances relative to what they can see ahead and the effects of weather on surface grip on those distances. Tall order.
Derek Reynolds, Salop.

Agree (2) | Disagree (1)
+1

To round things off and to get back to the headline then Duncan, how then would you stop road users having collisions? Last time I asked you that, I recall you referred me to somebody with a vaguely foreign sounding surname who'd written a book, but as an acknowledged expert in the field yourself, what would you do? Actually, it would be interesting to find out what measures other readers/contributors would put in place if it were their responsibilty. Any takers?
Hugh Jones, Cheshire

Agree (7) | Disagree (2)
+5

Duncan

Your arguments seem to be based on telling people to go away and read articles and analyse unreferenced statistics so that they can come to the same conclusions as yourself.

What you fail to do is communicate concisely and adequately exactly what you would do to reduce danger. Its a constant denigration of others in road safety and their initiatives with very little positive contribution.

I look forward with anticipation to ever seeing anything constructive but in the meantime I suspect readers will simply regard your comments as "no surprise - no accident"
Rod King, 20's Plenty for Us

Agree (8) | Disagree (3)
+5

Might as well throw this in...It's not speeding that's the problem even with it being below the speed limit. It's not giving enough room that's the problem. As is known the greater the speed the greater the distance travelled and to be safer the greater the speed the greater the distance should be between other vehicles. Now a lot would argue that it's not about that but it is. With distance comes many other advantages. One is to see better and be seen more easily by others. Another is that distance equals time, time to react, time to assess, time to decide, time to slow or time to stop. Distance also means that happenings that would have been close and just within a driver's peripheral vision are now further away if ever and a driver no longer tailgates and loses fixation on the vehicle in front. Greater space between vehicles allows others to pull out safely onto the road. Greater space allows drivers to stop on amber instead of running red lights. Greater space enables a driver to slow on an amber light knowing he will not be rear ended. Mors space keeps a motorcyclist safer in the knowledge that if he falls off he is less likely to be run over. All these things and more will not happen with altering the speed limit. All will happen if drivers afford more space and they will subsequently become more courteous and considerate as they find that they no longer are in such a hurry. Driving becomes easier with other traffic a greater distance away and stress levels reduce. It's not the be all and end all and it places no restriction on the driver such as lower speed limits or increases legislation. The answer is already there, it's just that many don't see it.
Bob Craven Lancs....Space is Safe Campaigner

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+4

Some lovely laws there Rod. You will also know therefore that these are 'catch-all' laws that because they lack any parameters are only used after an event and not before. The lack of parameters usually means they have to be argued out in open court (long may it be so) and judgements made by wise people as to whether the particular laws were actually being broken at the time of the event.

As you know, catch-all laws are always a matter of opinion and never of fact so for example I know that someone is only in proper control of their motorbike if they can manage a 2.5 second rotation and a sub 30 second GP8. I doubt very much whether anybody on this forum has even the slightest clue what I am on about yet this is critical to understanding the role of compliance in safety systems. As an acknowledged expert in the field I know that a particular rider might not be in full control (technically non compliant), but the rider himself does not know this. If they think/know that they are in full control then it's just as true for them that they are as it is to me that they are not!

It is all too easy for people to adopt the role of expert (when they clearly are not) and stand in judgement of others without any knowledge of how those others understand the world about them. To one person another person might be driving dangerously, but the person involved will think they are driving perfectly safely considering the circumstances. One may say another is distracted or not taking due care, but once again that person will say for certain that they are neither of those things.

The key to understanding road safety therefore is to understand the role of the local rationality principle (look it up in Dekker or Reason) and not the role of compliance with a set of standards that only exist in somebody else's head.
Duncan MacKillop. No surprise - No accident.

Agree (4) | Disagree (7)
-3

Andrew

I suspect that we have a different set of values. Exceeding the speed limit is surely being "inconsiderate to other road users". The speed limit is set by society with "other road users" in mind. Exceeding the speed limit means that either you cannot control your speed or are rejecting the limit set by society. Neither in my mind constitute compliance.
Rod King, 20's Plenty for Us

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0

"..experienced drivers exceeding the limit when conditions allow, whom statistics show to be the safest drivers on the road". What satistics? Have you verified it as a fact Andrew? How have has that 'fact' been established? Like you I 'get tired of posts based on opinion without evidence, aka dogma'.

To Duncan, please note Rod's neat, straight to the point, suummary of the laws that we're referring to when we talk about 'compliance' - I'm pretty sure he hasn't 'attempted to make them up', as you've suggested.
Hugh Jones, Cheshire

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0

Per Rod, so presumably drivers in control of their vehicles, paying attention, with an excellent safety record and being considerate of other road users would be desirable?
That is excellent news, as it perfectly describes experienced drivers exceeding the limit when conditions allow, whom statistics show to be the safest drivers on the road, with 50% of the driving population involved in 1.5% of the fatalities

Per Hugh, ‘By 'speeding', I mean going too fast to be able to stop - often over the speed limit, but not necssarily so.’

Speeding is widely understood to mean exceeding the speed limit. Poor use of terminology defeats rational discussion. Perhaps that is why 'motorists campaigner(s)' get tired of posts based on opinion without evidence, aka dogma.

There is little merit in discussions with such. I will be presenting a stand ‘Experience Counts’ at the annual conference for those interested in discussion based on evidence.
Andrew Mather, Kent

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+1

Duncan

also

150
You MUST exercise proper control of your vehicle at all times.
Rod King, 20's Plenty for Us

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+2

I think it must come down to individual abilities behind the wheel then Andrew i.e. observation, anticipation, thinking, vehicle control, manageable speed etc. to be sure of avoiding collisions with other road users. I can only respectfully suggest if you're not confident about being able to do this at 'normal' traffic speeds then as you say, you should adopt much lower speeds to be absolutely sure - small price to pay surely? If that means 3mph or 5mph then there is something drastically wrong with your car's brakes!
Hugh Jones, Cheshire

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+1

Getting back to the material within this article. When it comes to alcohol one drink would probably be acceptable by many (not me) and not considered against the law and the law indeed does allows a certain degree of alcohol consumption (it shouldn't). There is by association a thought that all alcohol causes accidents and deaths and injuries. That cannot be proven. Why is there a 'no tolerance' to all drugs but allowances are made for alcohol?

Use of mobile phones although appearing to be statistically down on the previous survey done some 9 years ago. Yet it is not held responsible for many incidents and deaths but again thought to be one of the main culprits. Why isn't smoking or talking or eating considered a common cause of incidents as that takes place more frequently than the use of a mobile phone. The only time talking is considered a dangerous distraction is on a PSV, a Pubic Service Vehicle, a bus. So as it is considered dangerous and is legislated for then why isn't there legislation prohibiting it on other forms of transport.
Bob Craven Lancs...Space is Safe Campaigner

Agree (3) | Disagree (2)
+1

Duncan

144
You MUST NOT

drive dangerously
drive without due care and attention
drive without reasonable consideration for other road users.
Law RTA 1988 sects 2 & 3 as amended by RTA 1991
Rod King, 20's Plenty for Us

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+3

Per Hugh,
'responsibility for not colliding with slower moving, vulnerable road users'

This is a familiar 'plausible' justification for blaming motorists yet you entirely disregard stopping distance, a fundamental premise in driving. A motorist regularly passes within one or two metres of pedestrians or cyclists or other vehicles. To avoid a collision if the other road user manoeuvres unexpectedly would require a speed of three or five miles per hour.

Forget 'twenty is plenty' you would need 'five is alive' or 'three is for me'. For as long as you disregard that road users have a responsibility for their own safety, they will continue to be injured.

With a 150 word limit, I focused on the key issue. Perhaps you might do the same.
You expound your position and disregard evidence or fact, the mark of a dogma or religion.
Andrew Mather, Kent

Agree (7) | Disagree (3)
+4

Rod and Hugh are opening up a very interesting debate as to the meaning of the term 'compliance'. Let's be clear that if the Highway Code says 'must' or 'must not' then if you don't follow that rule then you are non-compliant. If on the other hand it says 'should' then that means it is NOT a rule and that following it is at the user's discretion.

Although some on this forum might not like it, human errors and mistakes are NOT against the law as they are governed by processes that are often beyond conscious thought and therefore cannot be deliberate acts. Every human being makes roughly a million mistakes and errors every day and without them we would be utterly incapable of functioning let alone be able to drive a car or walk to the shops.

By attempting to make up their own laws and then insisting people to comply with them without any evidence as to their efficacy, Rod and Hugh are doing this industry an immense disservice as they are blinding people to the real problems. Laws and the compliance thereof are decided by a democratic process after free and open debate.

The evidence clearly shows that the fully compliant, non-speeding driver is the biggest killer on the roads and changing the rules to make them non-compliant, but leaving every other variable in place will not make them any less of a killer.
Duncan MacKillop. No surprise - No accident.

Agree (4) | Disagree (4)
0

Your arguments and reasoning have the familiar ring of a 'motorists campaigner' Andrew! We do get the odd one on this forum from time to time. I notice you skipped the questions in my last paragraph. By 'speeding', I mean going too fast to be able to stop - often over the speed limit, but not necssarily so.

As motorists, we should assume responsibility for not colliding with slower moving, vulnerable road users - not make excuses. As Derek says, we're the ones in charge of a lump of metal moving at speed which can inflict harm.
Hugh Jones, Cheshire

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-1

Per Hugh,
How many accidents do you witness in a year, versus the 108,000 assessed in Stats 19?
You witness 'non-compliance' and assume it leads to accidents. The police I'm afraid disagree. I trust also that when they report the time of the incident, you trust that to be reasonably accurate.

Traffic density explains 98.1% of accidents, the fit so perfect that one line disappears under the other. And at peak and daytime traffic hours, as you can imagine, speeding is suppressed, yet accidents are happening involving 'compliant' drivers.

You assume that a non-speeding motorist by definition cannot hit and kill a pedestrian.
Priceless. It is the illusion of safety. A pedestrian can step in front of a vehicle in less than the thinking time.

If you truly believe that 10mph or 20mph over the limit on a clear road is more dangerous than doing the speed limit past a driver that is about to pull out of a junction without looking, then that’s up to you.
Andrew Mather, Kent

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-4

I believe a victim can also be a perpetrator, but that makes it seem like victimisation is self inflicted when it clearly cannot be – unless they are suicidal which appears is rare. However, a pedestrian can, by their own fault of not looking when stepping into a road, be killed. All it takes is contact with a lump of metal travelling at a speed sufficient to cause a fatal head injury, or a deflection onto a road surface or piece of street furniture – and both can occur at or below legal speeds.

One can witness non-compliance of traffic laws on the roads frequently. But how many times do we witness them actually causing an accident? More often we can see accidents and their causation through the lenses of CCTV cameras, and I’ll wager the majority are due to a lack of judging speeds and trajectory of others and/or themselves.
Derek Reynolds, Salop.

Agree (6) | Disagree (1)
+5

Some contributors' faith in the accuracy of our collision reporting system is touching and even understandable, but rather naive I'm afraid. Thanks to an unnecessarily long and too specific, list from which an officer is obliged to select factors in a collision - which he/she didn't even witness in the first place - a distorted 'official' record of how collisions are supposedly caused, then becomes gospel apparently.

Me? I'd rather trust the evidence of my own eyes of what I see on the roads every day: non- compliance, speeding, carelessness and recklessness on the part of motorists. Do you not think non-compliance with the Highway Code also counts as 'non-compliance' Duncan?

A couple of questions to Mr Mather - How does a 'non-speeding' motorist manage to hit a pedestrian hard enough to kill them? Why do you think they weren't able to stop in time if they weren't speeding and how do you know they were 'non-speeding' anyway and if you cite Stats 19, how did the reporting officer know?
Hugh Jones, Cheshire

Agree (6) | Disagree (6)
0

Duncan

I see you are switching from all fatalities to now just look at motorcyclists.

I accept that you may believe that "travelling too fast for conditions", "losing control", "poorly turning so that control is lost", "failing to look properly", "being careless, reckless" are all signs of rider compliance, but I suspect that many others would believe that these were signs of non-compliance.

And regardless of the judgement that you may make, or not make, about these, shouldn't we be designing roads and use of roads in a way such that they are tolerant of such "normal behaviour", "faults", "non-compliance","illegalities" (you can delete whichever you personal view may determine) even if that may push some of them from the "accepted" to the "illegal".
Rod King, 20's Plenty for Us

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+6

‘victims not perpetrators’?
98.6% of pedestrian injuries, 92% of fatalities involve non-speeding drivers and pedestrians… who then is the victim and who the perpetrator?

63% of pedestrian injuries involve pedestrian failing to look, 45% of fatalities, with 77% and 64% respectively for driver or pedestrian failed to look or judge

The excessive speed measure (too fast for conditions and exceeding the speed limit) is apples and oranges, as one is event based, the other describes a class of driver, a majority of drivers indeed, who drive according to traffic monitors in a normal distribution of speeds

86% of fatalities involve non-speeding drivers, approximately 8% Class III Lethal (drink-fuelled boy-racers) and 4% impaired (eg: drink, phone, aggressive, young) drivers, with normal everyday mature (over 30) drivers covering 150 billion miles a year (50% of the driving population) involved in 1.5% of fatalities, making them by far the safest drivers on the road.

Prejudice and an easy collar drive current policy, not a rational assessment of the facts.
Andrew Mather, Kent

Agree (7) | Disagree (6)
+1

Rod

I have just been sent an Infographic by those nice people at the DfT which contains lots of useful information for motorcycle accidents. Let's assume for one moment that all motorcyclists are law-breakers and view the figures through that lens. Out of all the 'causal factors' only 1 and 2/3rds of them point to non-compliance in any form. Let's go through them shall we? Slippery road - 5% (travelling on a slippery road is not against the law). Travelling too fast for conditions - 3% (once again not speeding is not against the law). Exceeding speed limit - 3% (yup, against the law). Poor turn - 14% (not against the law). Failed to look properly - 30% (not against the law). Failed to judge another's path or speed - 16% (not against the law). Sudden braking - 5% (not against the law). Loss of control - 9% (not against the law). Careless, reckless or in a hurry - 11% (this is a tricky one as being reckless or careless is probably against the law, but being in a hurry is not). Learner or inexperienced rider - 5% (not against the law). What is interesting is that the reamaining 35% have no causal factor recorded yet you would have thought that a Policeman would soon be able to spot any non-compliance and note it appropriately.

Doing some maths I would suggest that according to the Government the nasty law-breakers are responsible for roughly 10% of accidents. Seems like my fully compliant, non-speeding driver figure of 90% is pretty well spot-on!
Duncan MacKillop. No surprise - No accident.

Agree (7) | Disagree (6)
+1

Suicides are not included in fatal casualty statistics, nor are those where a medical incident (e.g. heart attack) preceded the crash.
Honor Byford, Chair, Road Safety GB

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+4

Duncan

Despite trying to "chuck" figures around I can find no basis for your insistence that 90% of fatalities do not involve any non-compliance with the law. Can you please provide any reference to any analysis which substantiates your assertion. Simply saying "look at the stats" is not credible.

You are also rather missing the point of the Monash report. Whilst recognising the diverse and cumulative factors in creating the conditions whereby a collision occurs it also advocates the Safe System approach that allows such factors to be less likely to result in a collision such as speed management and reduction.

You seem to be making this far too personal with talk of "raison d'être" and "acolytes". You are also inaccurate in your use of words.

Robert

I think you will find that with regard to road fatalities "Confirmed suicides are excluded".
Rod King, 20's Plenty for Us

Agree (8) | Disagree (3)
+5

Duncan, just for the record what do you mean by 'fully compliant and non-speeding' anyway? Do you have any actual examples of serious crashes which only involved fully compliant non-speeding drivers and if so, how do you actually know they were and how did the collisions occur at all if carelessness and recklessness on the part of at least one party, were not the triggers?
Hugh Jones, Cheshire

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+3

Honor mentions that the airline, rail and maritime industries do not have an “acceptable death rate" but they still have deaths that they can do nothing about - suicides. People jump off ships and drown, people jump off platforms in front of trains and pilots crash planes. No amount of legislation is going to stop that. The increased use of dashboard cameras has shown a regular number of suicides on the roads. Trains run on rails, they cannot collide unless there is a signalling fault. Most aircraft fly on autopilot, but can have mechanical failure, like the Air France Airbus. When aircraft are being driven on the ground, like an enormous bus they have minor collisions with other aircraft and buildings, but as far as I know no fatalities. But there can be fatalities on the ground, I recall someone walked straight into the propellers of an aircraft that he assumed had a pure jet engine. He died. Zero road deaths will never be achieved as long as we have mechanical failure, suicides and vehicles driven under the individual control of many different people without fencing to separate vehicles from pedestrians (as the railways have).
Robert Bolt, St Albans

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+8

Thanks Rod for highlighting those reports that exclude pedestrians. I thought that saving pedestrians was your raison-detre?

Chuck all the KSI's together though and it still comes out at around 90% it couldn't be any other figure. Even if you tortured the numbers by excluding various pieces of data you would be hard pushed to get it below 80% which is still a significantly high number of fully compliant, non-speeding drivers.

The point is though that all the time we spend arguing about the outdated thought processes of Rod and his acolytes we are not actually concentrating on the problem itself. David is pretty well bang-on with his observations that it is with the understanding of 'care and attention' and 'driving on autopilot' that we can make some significant progress.
Duncan MacKillop. No surprise - No accident.

Agree (4) | Disagree (6)
-2

Duncan's assertion that 90% of fatal crashes are caused by compliant drivers is, I feel, somewhat misleading.

They appear to be compliant in that they are deemed not to be speeding, or going through red lights etc., but are they really compliant? Are they driving with all the care and attention that an average driver should be giving to the task at hand? It is extremely difficult to prove that they are not doing just that, but my suspicion is that they are probably very much on autopilot. Had they really been giving the task of driving the attention it deserves, then they would have probably been better able to predict developing situations while there was still time to do something about them.
David, Suffolk

Agree (10) | Disagree (4)
+6

Duncan

To clarify, are you saying that every Stats19 report will show that in less than 10% of the fatal crashes was anyone not complying with the law?

This seems to be at odds with http://eprints.ucl.ac.uk/3494/1/3494.pdf
which said that 20% of all fatalities across all road user groups involved a driver over the drink-drive limit.

Or how about 34% of those fatalities not wearing seat belts.

and then :-
Third is speed as a contributory factor to a fatal accident. Although the actual
number of speed-related fatal accidents declines with age, it is only when drivers are
over 30 years of age that the percentage of fatal accidents in each age group with
speed as a contributory factor falls below 50% of the total fatal accidents for each
age group.
Rod King, 20's Plenty for Us

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+3

Any Stats 19 publication or accident analysis report will do it Rod. They all say the same.
Duncan MacKillop. No surprise - No accident.

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-4

Thank you Duncan

Which "Stats 19" publication is this? Do you have the URL. What is the para or reference that shows the 90%. And the "findings of the more in-depth research into accidents". Which publication are you referring to and what para is this finding.
Rod King, 20's Plenty for Us

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+3

Rod.

I think you'll find confirmation in the Government's Stats 19 publication. Further support is provided from the "On the Spot" survey and I'm sure that the Insurance industry database will also confirm the facts.

Whilst digesting all the data it might also be worth taking a quick scan of the paper first published in 2005 from the highly respected Monash University. http://www.monash.edu.au/miri/research/reports/muarc256.pdf
Duncan MacKillop. No surprise - No accident.

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+3

If Rod King can supply details of scientific trials held that show without prejudice that 20mph speed limits on urban roads demonstrably show that such limits can and have reduced accidents in a before and after scenario, then we are left with opinions, of the residents, businesses, and organisations who seek to claim they are in any way beneficial.
Derek Reynolds, Salop.

Agree (9) | Disagree (5)
+4

Duncan
Your 90% and other opinions seem to be just "opinions". Can you give the reference to the DfT document and the "findings" document to which you are placing so much reliance. Thanks
Rod King, 20's Plenty for Us

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+2

Duncan:
The biggest variable is human nature. On the road the abilities of the individual vary from th accident free, cautious, to the accident-prone careless and reckless and for as long as we (society and the authorities) tolerate that without more clamping down, the problem will never go away. We can compensate for their shortcomings with improved vehicle technology and road and street furniture design, more technology in traffic and speed control, traffic calming etc. and but we're ignoring the elephant in the room.
Hugh Jones, Cheshire

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+2

Rod, the 90% figure comes from the Government's own statistical tables and the findings of the more in-depth research into accidents. The figure is pretty much in line with the understanding in systems thinking first proposed by Deming (as an Automotive Engineer Rod knows all about the works of Deming), that between 85-99% of unwanted outcomes are the result of normal variation in the system. As the vast majority of system users are fully compliant, sober and don't engage in speeding then the variation amongst these system users represents 'normal' in the truest sense of the word.

To pick up Honor's statement that "It is much more difficult to address the many more variables of road travel" this is an age old cop out as addressing variation in multi-variate systems is dead easy when you know how. A motor car has around 30,000 components each of which is the output from a process that also exhibits variation, yet the range and effect of every one of those variables is fully known and understood. I suspect that the road transport system would comprise of a similar number of variables so if an analysis can be made of the variation in the vehicles then a similar analysis can be made of the system in which those vehicles operate.

Derek, familiarity does not breed contempt, it breeds understanding. Where understanding falls down however is with the unfamiliar and the off-normal and it's these situations that are the reasons for accidents. Modern educational methods and the latest discoveries in brain function have given us a way of helping people get a better handle on those off-normal and unusual circumstances. All we have to do is to put them into action and we will see an immediate improvement.
Duncan MacKillop. No surprise - No accident.

Agree (7) | Disagree (9)
-2

Seeking the causation of individual accidents is not hard to achieve. Educating individuals to that causation in an attempt to stop a repeat is fairly easy. But there is involved a self disciplinary action by the good drivers to remain good, and the new drivers to understand what is needed to be and remain good - i.e. vigilant to all circumstances that can appear whilst driving - that's the hardest part. Familiarity breeds contempt. Nice target, impossible to hit. But worth trying all the same.
Derek Reynolds, Salop.

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+15

I understand the scepticism about whether we can ever achieve an aim of zero deaths on the roads. I prefer to use Vision Zero to challenge the attitude we often encounter that "well, deaths on the roads are inevitable aren't they?". In short, as Julie Townsend rightly says, every death on the road is avoidable and that should be our starting point. Otherwise, how many deaths are we saying are inevitable? The numbers last year? or five years ago? (which were higher) or 25 years ago (which were even higher).

Had we taken that view thirty of fifty years ago we would not now have the much lower levels of deaths and injuries we see today.

The airline, rail and maritime industries do not have an “acceptable death rate” nor does the HSE for the workplace and neither should we for travel on the roads.

It is much more difficult to address the many more variables of road travel with its extensive and multi-factored network and so many individual users in a variety of vehicles but between us all we have made great progress and we should continue to seek solutions that prevent collisions.
Honor Byford, Chair, Road Safety GB

Agree (17) | Disagree (5)
+12

Duncan

Can you please explain where you get your 90% figure from?
Rod King, 20's Plenty for Us

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0

They may well be involved in a high proprtion of collisions Duncan, but as victims, not as perpetrators. If we're talking about getting the perpetrators off the road, we need to be targeting the many non-compliant, speeding, careless and reckless drivers who are no doubt in my mind causing the problems. The compliant, non-speeding, careful drivers may well be the victims, which is where you get your 90% figure from possibly. More enforcement of the laws is the answer, thanks to the points system leading to a ban and out of harms way.

As the article seems to be just about reducing fatalities, then improving passenger protection and things like automatic braking will no doubt help, but that does not address the underlying problem.
Hugh Jones, Cheshire

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-4

Removing these drivers would not be a good idea, but what would be a good idea is finding out why they (we) are involved in such a high proportion of accidents. Understand the reasons why and we will be able to move towards zero, but we will never be able to get there until we do.
Duncan MacKillop. No surprise - No accident.

Agree (15) | Disagree (3)
+12

Great idea Duncan. Obviously we need to remove the fully compliant, non-speeding, sober drivers from the roads thereby achieving a 90% reduction in road deaths overnight. The non-motoring public can then safely venture out, safe in the knowledge that the only ones left on the road are the non- compliant, speeding, never sober drivers. Can't see any flaws in that at all.
Hugh Jones, Cheshire

Agree (6) | Disagree (14)
-8

If vision-zero is to have any chance of success, we must start with an evidence-led approach, and that requires that all interventions are run within scientific trials. If we can prove what works and what doesn't, the knowledge gained could provide a break-through in our understanding of road safety. Then, and only then, might vision-zero become a realistic possibility.
Dave Finney, Slough

Agree (16) | Disagree (4)
+12

Of course if the desire is to reduce the road death toll to zero then something must be done about the fully compliant, non-speeding (and sober) drivers that are involved in over 90% of fatal accidents.
Duncan MacKillop. No surprise - No accident.

Agree (15) | Disagree (6)
+9