following article was published in October 2007.
Deaths in London Rise
London Road Safety Unit (part of TfL) has recently published the road accident
figures for 2006 (see
www.tfl.gov.uk/corporate/2840.aspx for the full report). Fatal accidents
rose by 8% over the previous year to 231, and serious injuries also rose by 8%
to 3,715. These figures were unexpected of course and TfL suggest there is some
error in “data processing” but have been unable to identify exactly what.
Although slight injuries fell by 8%, those figures are more suspect due to
possible variations in reporting. The KSI data is particularly disappointing
bearing in mind that resources tend to concentrated on reducing the killed and
seriously injured numbers.
result is that the target for a reduction of fatalities of 50% by 2010 looks
unlikely to be met as you can see from the chart taken from the TfL report
truly amazing thing that this graph shows is that in essence fatalities in
London have barely changed since 1994 despite the enormous growth in expenditure
on road safety – particularly on speed humps, speed cameras, 20 mph zones, speed
limit reductions, and lots of other similar “gestures”. Meanwhile traffic
volumes in London have not changed much in those years.
figures show a more positive trend over the same period, but even there the
latest data shows a major rise since the low point seen in early 2005.
the overall casualty figures, pedal cyclists were the only group though that
showed an increase, probably simply because cycling is more common. Accidents
involving powered two-wheelers, which have been a growing problem in recent
years, seem at least to have stabilised.
(Editor: it appears to me that these figures demonstrate that
road safety policies need to be substantially rethought. The same problems are
of course reflected on a national basis where fatalities are also not falling
significantly. Clearly the current policies are not working but all we get from
Government ministers and road safety advocates tends to be “more of the same
will solve the problem”. There is currently an enormous amount of your
taxpayers’ money being wasted on ineffective solutions to reducing road deaths.)
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