Serious injuries under reported, DfT acknowledges
Tens of thousands of serious injuries caused by road collisions may be going unreported every year, it was widely reported by various media sources yesterday (16 Jan).
The stats come from the DfT in response to a written question by Louise Ellman, chair of the Transport Select Committee.
Ms Ellman’s question was based on information in the National Travel Survey (NTS) which uses data from hospitals, surveys and compensation claims to estimate how many injuries were not reported to police.
The stats show that each year from 2011 to 2015, between 380,000 and 540,000 slight injuries did not come to police attention.
Between 30,000 and 90,000 of these are thought to have been serious, compared with the 22,137 serious injuries reported in 2015.
Talking to the Telegraph, Steve Gooding, director of the RAC Foundation, said: "The key to understanding any situation is to be able to trust the numbers behind it.
"The positive news is that the worst accidents which cause the worst injuries are almost universally likely to come to police attention, and hence get recorded and analysed to help avoid similar events in the future.
"The biggest cracks come at the other end of the spectrum where cuts, bruises and sore necks go unreported.
“However, the validity of some of these injuries must be questionable, not least many of the 1,500 whiplash claims which the insurance industry deals with daily and is working with government to reduce."