Great Britain has one of the best road safety records in Europe and the world. Despite massive increases in traffic over the last few decades, the number of people killed on our roads has fallen from around 5,500 per year in the mid 1980s to well under 2,000 in 2011. However, the number of deaths rose in 2011, from 1,850 the previous year to 1,901. This means that five people die on Britain’s roads every day.
Reported Road Casualties in Great Britain, 2011
Seriously Injured 23,122
Slightly Injured 178,927
These figures are for road accidents in which someone was injured on a public road and which were reported to the police. Although virtually all fatal road accidents are reported to the police, it is known that many involving injury are not reported, even when some of those involved required medical or hospital treatment. It is estimated that the total number of road casualties in Great Britain is between 660,000 and 880,000 per year, with a best estimate of around 730,000. This includes an estimated 80,000 people who are seriously injured.
Common causes of these unnecessary tragedies include:
Around 430 people a year are killed in crashes in which someone exceeds the speed limit or drives too fast for the conditions.
Around 250 people die a year in crashes in which someone was over the legal drink drive limit.
Seat Belt Wearing
Around 300 lives each year could be saved if everyone always wore their seat belt.
More than 300 deaths a year involve someone being "careless, reckless or in a hurry", and a further 125 involve "aggressive driving".
Around one third of fatal and serious road crashes involve someone who was at work.
More than 430 people are killed in crashes involving young car drivers aged 17 to 24 years, every year, including over 150 young drivers, 90 passengers and more than 180 other road users.