30% increase in serious road traffic accidents in York

The numbers killed or seriously injured in road traffic accidents in York increased from 58 to 75 last year.

KSI figures to 2015

Figures obtained using Freedom of Information legislation reveal that accident rates in York increased significantly in 2014.

All types of road user were affected including pedestrians and cyclists.

The increase was the largest since the “95Alive” task group was set up 10 years ago to counter a peak in road causalities.

The increase is bound to reopen the debate about wide area 20 mph speed limits. One of the claimed objectives of that project – launched in 2013 – was to reduce accidents. Opponents warned that the consequences could be that police enforcement time was reduced at accident black spots and that the deterrent affect, of focusing lower speed limits at key sites like schools and shopping areas, would be lost.

It appears that these concerns were justified.

Up to 2011, the Council’s Executive member used to receive a regular public report on road traffic accidents. The reports included details of the type of accident and the location. Officials made recommendations about possible remedial works (road alignment, signage, speed enforcement etc) which might avoid accidents in the future. This approach was abandoned by the last Council when it fell under Labour control. 

It is time for a targeted approach to accident reduction – covering the activities of all agencies – to be reintroduced

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