The most recent Government report (see below link) confirms that a total of 25,160 people were killed or seriously injured on our roads in the 12 months ending September 2016, up by 6% on the previous year.

There were 182,560 casualties of all severities on our roads in the 12 months ending September 2016, down by 4% from the previous year.

Whilst it is positive to see a reduction in the total number of injuries sustained on our roads it nevertheless is of a concern that there has been a sharp rise in those suffering serious injury or having been killed.

The report confirms that those affected by the 6% increase in road death or seriously injured came from the following groups:-

a) Car occupants - increased by 10%

b) Pedestrians - increased by 3%

c) Motorcylist - increased by 5%

d) Cyclist - increased by 2%

Having acted in personal injury/fatal incident claims for those that have suffered either serious injury or have been bereaved on our roads it is unfortunately not uncommon for the driver at fault to have been found speeding, on the phone, over the drink drive limit or otherwise distracted.

The law changed this year to increase the punishment to 6 points and a £200 fine if you are found to have been using a hand held device. This has been supported by a significant police campaign and will hopefully act as deterrent to bad driving behaviour.

There have also been advances in technology from the road side drug swipe test used by police to the gradual development of driverless technology that could lead to a reduction in collisions.

Additionally, road safety campaigns by national road safety charities such as BRAKE and RoadPeace continue to highlight areas where improvement is required.

We are also fortunate in England to have a good civil legal system to support those that have been seriously injured or bereaved on our roads. It remains law that all drivers of vehicles must have compulsory motor insurance. As such, those injured or bereaved have a right to seek from the insurer of the party at fault financial redress that will be important to meet expenses such as the cost of private medical treatment, loss of earnings, and in the case of death the funeral expenses.

Matthew Claxson is a Partner and a Solicitor at Moore Blatch specialising in acting for those who have either suffered serious injury or have been bereaved. Freephone: 0800 157 7611 or E:mail matthew.claxson@mooreblatch.com