Road safety and breakdown organisation GEM Motoring Assist is calling on the UK Government to take immediate and robust action to deal with the entirely unnecessary rise in road fatalities and serious injuries.
The call comes on the day the Department for Transport publishes its Reported Road Casualties Great Britain: 2014 Annual Report.
GEM chief executive David Williams MBE had strong words for ministers:
“To claim, as the Department for Transport has done, that a four per cent rise in fatalities is ‘not statistically significant’ is an outrage. Try telling that to the relatives and friends of the 1,775 people who lost their lives.
“To blame the increase on a rise in traffic levels is a monstrous abrogation of responsibility. The worst year for road deaths in this country was 1941, when traffic levels were just a fraction of what they are today.
“The Government needs to face up to its responsibilities and accept that a strong, robust lead in road safety is now a pressing priority.”
GEM has four specific recommendations for the UK Government:
1 Bring back casualty reduction targets as an effective way of unifying and motivating everyone working in road safety.
2 Reverse the drastic reductions in traffic policing resources in order to get more officers back on the roads.
3 Commit to removing the most dangerous drivers from the road, through more consistent sentencing guidelines for courts.
4 Bring the recent graduated driver licensing proposal back out of the ‘long grass’ to become an urgent policy priority.
David Williams concludes with a straightforward message: “Every road death is avoidable, so take the lead and save lives,” he says.