Has a reduction in Roads Policing Officer's resulted in an increase in serious injury and fatal incidents on our roads?
This BBC article sets out the findings made by the national road safety charity RoadPeace and raises some rather alarming conclusions.
These conclusions are not dissimilar to a recent UK Government report for the 12 month period ending September 2016 that confirmed a total of 25,160 people were either killed or seriously injured on our road, up by 6% on the previous year!
Furthermore, from my own experience as a solicitor acting for those who have suffered serious injury or bereavement as a result of a road traffic collision the number of serious road collisions does seem to have been creeping up since the credit crunch of 2010.
Whilst RoadPeace have raised the prospect of the unintended consequence of a reduction in roads policing officer's might have had on the number of road collisions there is still hope for improvement.
This year we have had an increased penalty introduced for those found using a hand held device whilst driving - a doubling of the penalty to six points and a £200 fine. Also, a substantial increase in the penalty for those detected exceeding the speed limit. Furthermore, the ability of GP's to make a report to the DVLA of those patients who they believe ought not to be driving. All of these reforms may in themselves influence driver behaviour with the intended consequence of a reduction in collisions.
I hold out hope that by working together as a society with mutual respect for one another on our roads we can achieve a safer driving environment for us all.
Matthew Claxson is a Solicitor and a Partner at Moore Blatch Solicitors who have offices in the City of London, Richmond, Southampton and Lymington, Matthew specialises in acting for those who have suffered serious injury and/or have been sadly bereaved. Matthew is experienced at delivering training on the civil law to medical and law enforcement professionals. To speak with Matthew or any member of the team on either a personal injury claim or training then please Freephone 0800 157 7611 or firstname.lastname@example.org
The number of people killed or seriously injured on roads in England and Wales has been falling for decades, but RoadPeace says the decline slowed after 2010 when cuts were made to traffic policing.