London, 27 Jun 2006.
For immediate release.

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Real Stats Show Government Road Safety Policy Up a Blind Alley
Figures from Oxford University researchers show that, despite millions spent backing the 'kill your speed' policy, the UK's roads are not getting safer.

A report, entitled "Changes in Safety on England's Roads" shows clearly that road safety campaigns focussing almost solely on speed have failed to deliver. Where Police statistics have shown reductions in crashes, more reliable hospital admission figures show that road safety has flatlined — just as many people are being hurt today as in the early 1990s.
 
Mark McArthur-Christie, the ABD's director of Policy, commented
"The real figures tell the truth — and tell it clearly. Despite millions spent on humps, calming, cameras and campaigns our roads are not getting safer. Simplicity, soundbites and political expediency have been allowed to dictate a road safety policy that is more concerned with legality than safety."
Road safety policy in the UK has focused since the early 1990s on "speed kills — so kill your speed". Cameras have proliferated, as have lower limits, humps, bumps and calming. The ABD believes these have not delivered results because they focus on the wrong things.
 
McArthur-Christie continues,
"These figures show we need finally to acknowledge that safe driving is about so much more than speed. What about observation? What about anticipation? What about hazard management? We need thinking, trained and educated drivers and road users, not simply ones who believe that speed limit compliance is the pinnacle of driving-skill achievement."
The ABD believes that, rather than imposing more and more external controls on drivers, the only way to safer roads is to ensure that control are internal. In other words, to train, educate and inform road users.
 

 
Notes for editors
 
The BMJ article is here:
http://bmj.bmjjournals.com/cgi/rapidpdf/bmj.38883.593831.4Fv1.pdf [pdf]

 
Notes for Editors