Provisional figures for 2015 show that the Scottish Government is on track to meet three of its 2020 casualty reduction targets and ‘marginally above’ where it needs to be on the fourth target.
The figures published today (29 June) show there were 10,950 reported road casualties, 3% fewer than 2014 and the lowest figure ever recorded. Of these, there were 162 fatalities (20% fewer than 2014), 1,597 people seriously injured (6% fewer than 2014) and 9,191 people slightly injured (2% fewer than 2014).
The Scottish Government says the figures give ‘a clear indication’ that it is on track to meet its 2020 targets.
Scotland’s Road Safety Framework to 2020 set casualty reduction targets based on a 2004-08 average baseline, along with ‘milestone’ targets for 2015.
The 2015 figures show the Government is exceeding on three of the four principal casualty reduction targets – fatalities, child fatalities and child serious injuries. In relation to the number of children killed, the framework reduction target for 2020 has already been exceeded.
On the fourth target, reducing the number of people seriously injured, figures show a ‘continued downward reduction’ of 39% against the baseline. While this is marginally above the 2015 milestone, the Scottish Government says it represents ‘a significant step’ towards the 2020 target of a 55% reduction.
Humza Yousaf, Scotland’s transport minister, said: “The figures published today show the continued downward trend in road casualties and the key 2015 milestone reductions are being met.
“We remain on track to achieve significant casualty reductions towards our 2020 targets, as well as realising our vision where no one is killed on Scotland’s roads and the injury rate is much reduced.
“This progress is to be welcomed but we must not and will not become complacent. We still have work to do, which is why my predecessor requested a mid-term review of the framework last June…which identified three key priority focus areas (speed, age and vulnerable road users) for activity through to 2020.
“Partners agreed addressing outcomes in these areas would assist the most in delivering against the 2020 casualty reduction targets.
“In particular, with certain road users such as cyclists, where there has been a big increase in (the number of) people cycling, fatalities are down from 2014 but continued effort is needed to tackle serious injuries.”
IAM RoadSmart welcomed the ‘good news’ but said the casualty figures are ‘still far too high’.
Neil Greig, IAM RoadSmart director of policy and research, said: “It’s good news that the long term downward trends in deaths and serious injuries on Scotland’s roads continue but the figures are still far too high.
“With over three deaths a week it is essential that the Scottish government continues its successful partnership approach to road safety. Joint working and clear targets are clearly having a positive impact.
“Continued investment in better roads, plus recent suggestions that Scotland might finally introduce speed awareness courses and drug-driving laws mean the country is well placed to make further gains.”
Click here to access the detailed statistics.