Road Safety GB and RoSPA have welcomed figures published last week by the DfT, which show new record lows in the number of people killed and injured in crashes.
In 2008, 2,538 people were killed on the roads (down from 2,946 in 2007) and 26,029 people were seriously injured (down from 27,774 in 2007). The total number of road casualties was 230,884 (down from 247,780 in 2007).
The figures mean that Britain has met its road safety targets set for 2010 – but clearly there is a need to make sure that this trend continues and does not stop or reverse during the next two years.
Alan Kennedy, chair of Road Safety GB, said: “Road Safety GB is encouraged that the numbers of people killed on the UK’s roads has once again fallen and is now at its lowest level since records began in 1926.
“These statistics highlight the hard work that is being carried out by road safety professionals across the country and provide a benchmark for the government to set targets for casualty reduction in the future.
“The challenge now for Road Safety GB and other road safety bodies is to maintain the momentum that has been built and further reduce the number of road deaths on the country’s roads.”
While generally welcoming the figures, RoSPA expressed concern at the increase in child deaths.
Kevin Clinton, RoSPA head of road safety, said: “This new record low shows that the fall in road deaths is a trend, not a statistical blip.
“However, it is unacceptable that more children died on the road in 2008 than in 2007. Even though the numbers have fallen significantly over the last 10 years, we need to understand why the latest figures are so bad for child deaths and get back on track to reducing them again.”
Click here to read the full DfT news release about the 2008 casualty figures.