Rise in road deaths blights positive trend

 

Road deaths in the year ending September 2015 have increased by 3% compared with the previous year, provisional government figures suggest.

The figure blights a positive trend in overall road casualties, which have shown ‘statistically significant’ falls in recent years.

In the year ending September 2015, there were 1,780 reported road fatalities, a 3% increase from 1,731 he previous year.

DfT officials said that this was ‘not statistically significant’ - given the data set size - meaning that the increase is probably to do with ‘a combination of factors that have come about by chance, rather than any specific change’.

Whereas the number of killed or seriously injured casualties (KSIs) decreased by 3% to 23,700 and the total number of casualties also decreased by 3% to 188,830.

”Local
Image from DfT report

Given the larger data set size, both these changes are ‘statistically significant at the 99% confidence level’, suggesting the fall has been caused by more than randomness or natural variation, and is likely to relate to improvements in road safety.

DfT officials said: ‘There has been a statistically significant decrease in the number of people injured (but not killed) in road traffic accidents between the years ending September 2014 and 2015. This indicates that there are a number of factors that have combined together to improve some aspects of safety on Britain’s roads. However, it is not definitive evidence of a continued improvement in road safety.

‘Although the number of people killed in road traffic accidents has increased between years, this change is small enough that it can be explained by the natural variation in deaths over time. Therefore there is not yet enough evidence to say that the number of road deaths is changing between years.’

The greatest decrease in KSIs by road user was for cyclists, who saw a 5% fall from 3,509 to 3,340 in the year ending September 2014 compared to September 2015.

”Local
Image from DfT report
 

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