Road casualties up in year ending Sept 2014

12.00 | 5 February 2015 | | 7 comments

Road deaths, KSI casualties and casualties of all severities rose in the 12-month period ending September 2014, compared with the corresponding period in 2013, according to stats released today (5 Feb) by the DfT.

The DfT bulletin shows that the number of road deaths (1,730) increased by 1% and KSI casualties (24,360) by 4%. In addition, child KSI casualties rose by 3% over this period.

In the same period there were 192,910 reported road casualties of all severities, an increase of 5%.

A 2% increase in motor traffic levels means the overall casualty rate per vehicle mile increased by 3% for the period.

Comparing the same quarters in 2014 and 2013, there was a 4% decrease in road deaths, a 2% decrease in KSIs while slightly injured casualties remained unchanged.

The DfT bulletin says: “Part of the reason for the increases over the rolling years is the unusually low number of casualties in the first quarter of 2013.

“This resulted in a large increase in casualties between Q1 2013 and Q1 2014 with offsetting falls in other quarters.”


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    I agree that the rise in casualties can (possibly) be explained by the rise in traffic (not just motor traffic) and random changes. What is of concern is that the casualty rate per mile is no longer reducing which means that the rate of change in casualties per passenger mile is increasing (leading to the from -ve to neutral) which if it continues means the actual rate will be from neutral to +ve.

    Mark, Caerphilly
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    Heard on Radio 4 this morning that the rise is attributed to reduction in road policing. This is certainly a major factor, but this is only part of the picture – up turn in the economy being another important consideration. No mention made of reduced education and training and importance of this work. Disappointing!

    Nick Lloyd
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    An upturn in the economy has been predicted and worked towards for the past 5 years. It is well established that an economic upturn will lead to more journeys and an increase in collisions and casualties. Are we saying this is acceptable? Or should government also have been planning and investing to address and mitigate this expected increase?
    Collisions and casualties are not inevitable.

    Honor Byford, Chair, Road Safety GB
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    An increase in economic activity and traffic levels will inevitably result in increased casualties. More cyclists and motorcyclists in a good summer will also have an effect. Hopefully we won’t have kneejerk reactions but properly thought through policies. Somehow I doubt it though.

    Chris Wilson
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    Whilst there is perhaps no need for alarm at this latest set of figures, what they do highlight is that the culture of complacency should not be allowed to continue either.

    Against a backdrop of rapid decline in fatalities to 2010 we saw the balance of public policy being refocussed on economic output and deficit reduction for the course of the current parliament. Along with the rhetoric around ending the war on the motorists the last five years has resulted in a flat-lining of progress.

    Failure to grasp key policy opportunities (introducing GDL & lowering drink drive limits) has all been set aside with a relentless focus on securing growth and reducing public expenditure but there must come a point when our elected representatives give some attention to the fact that we are losing our way as a global leader in road safety.

    Whilst the war on the motorist may have abated in recent years other vulnerable groups are taking the toll. Cyclist KSIs are now 38% higher when compared to the 2005-09 average and pedestrian KSIs are up 1% against the comparative quarter last year.

    Let’s see what election year brings in terms of policy commitment to restore the previous trend.

    Dan Campsall, Banbury
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    Agreed Paul.

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    Nothing to get alarmed about – seems like a random fluctuation and any increase in economic activity would mean more road users.

    Paul Biggs, Staffodshire
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