Towards the end of last year, the road safety charity Brake launched a campaign aiming to help all UK road users to look out for each other, with the aim of reducing the five deaths and 61 serious injuries that happen every day on UK roads [1][2], and particularly to protect people on foot and bike.

The call came at the beginning of Road Safety Week, coordinated by Brake, during which thousands of schools, communities and companies will be raising awareness and police across the UK will be stepping up traffic enforcement to deter and catch drivers putting others at risk.

Shocking Statistics

As part of the campaign, on the 17th November 2014, Brake and partners RSA and Specsavers revealed statistics highlighting the shocking numbers of drivers senselessly risking lives by flouting traffic laws. 

143,883 fixed penalty notices were issued for ‘careless driving’ and speeding offences in the South East in 2013 –one every four minutes. 142,363 were for speeding and 1,520 for careless driving (a fixed penalty newly introduced in August 2013). Embargoed figures are available by postcode, including the top 10 worst postcode areas [3].

Increasing Consideration

This lack of patience, consideration and responsibility towards other road users can and does result in tragedy. It can also stop the most vulnerable from exercising their right to healthy, active, sustainable travel. Results of Brake’s survey of 600 primary school children in the South East [4], released today, show:

  • three in five (60%) think roads in their community can be dangerous for walking and cycling;
  • two in five (43%) say they have been hit or nearly hit by a vehicle while on foot or bike.

Brake is calling on all road users to look out for each other, and particularly urging drivers to protect people on foot and bike – by slowing down to 20mph in communities, looking longer and taking it slow at junctions and bends, and giving people plenty of room and consideration. See below for more advice and facts.

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1] Reported road casualties in Great Britain 2013, Department for Transport, 2014
[2] Police recorded injury road traffic collision statistics: 2013 key statistics report, Police Service of Northern Ireland, 2014
[3] Analysis by Brake of data provided by the DVLA, September 2014 These figures are combined totals of the following careless driving offences: CD10: Driving without due care and attention; CD20: Driving without reasonable consideration for other road users; CD30: Driving without due care and attention or without reasonable consideration for other road users, and the following speeding offences: SP10: Exceeding goods vehicle speed limits; SP20: Exceeding speed limit for type of vehicle (excluding goods or passenger vehicles); SP30: Exceeding statutory speed limit on a public road; SP40: Exceeding passenger vehicle speed limit; SP50: Exceeding speed limit on a motorway; SP60: Undefined speed limit offence.
[4] ‘Hands up’ survey of 609 primary school children (aged 7-11) from schools in the South East participating in Brake’s Giant Walking Bus, carried out between January and May 2014. When asked ‘do you think roads in your neighbourhood can be dangerous for kids who are walking or cycling?’, 60% said yes, 40% said no. When asked ‘have you ever been hit or nearly hit by a vehicle while walking or cycling?’, 43% said yes, 57% said no.