New stats show 5% fall in road deaths

12.00 | 26 October 2017 |

Provisional figures published today (26 Oct) by the DfT show there were 1,710 road deaths in the 12 months ending June 2017, a 5% fall compared with the corresponding period ending June 2016.

The total number of casualties also fell by 5% to 176,500 across the same period.

The DfT describes the fall in road deaths as ‘statistically insignificant’ and says is ‘likely that the natural variation in the figures explains this change’. However, the bulletin goes on to say that the reduction in overall casualties is ‘statistically significant’.

There were 27,130 killed or seriously injured casualties (KSIs) in the same period, but the DfT says ‘comparisons of this figure with earlier years should be interpreted with caution due to changes in systems for severity reporting by some police forces’*.

Traffic levels rose by 1.4% in the same period, meaning the fatality rate per billion vehicle miles travelled fell by 6%.

Looking at road user type, there was a rise in the number of pedestrian casualties – up 1% to 24,190. Of those, 6,100 (25%) were KSIs. Cycle casualties also rose by 2% to 18,870, and of that figure, 20% (3,830) were KSIs.

There were, however, decreases in the total number of motorcycle casualties (down 3% to 18,390) and car users (down 8% to 103,010). In terms of motorcyclists, 33% (6,220) of those casualties were KSIs.

There were 16,090 child casualties (0-15 years) – unchanged compared to the previous period.

Looking specifically at Q2 2017, 400 road users were killed – a fall of 10% on the same period in 2016. Casualties of all severities also decreased, down by 6% to 41,700.

*Approximately half of English police forces adopted the CRASH (Collision Recording and Sharing) system for recording road traffic collisions at the end of 2015, or the first part of 2016.

In addition, the Metropolitan Police Service switched to a new reporting system called COPA (Case Overview Preparation Application) from September 2016.

In CRASH and COPA, the police officer records the type of injuries suffered by the casualty rather than the severity (severity is measured simply as ‘slight’ or ‘serious’)

Under other systems, to record severity directly, police officers need to determine themselves which injury type classifies into each of the two severity types.

CRASH and COPA are designed to eliminate any uncertainty that arises from the officer having to make their own judgement – and therefore be more accurate.

Category: Stats & data.


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