Record low for deaths on Scotland’s roads

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Deaths on Scotland’s roads fell to a record of low of 162 last year, provisional official figures showed today.

The total was 20 per cent down on the 203 in 2014, and compares to a high of 892 in 1969.

Injuries were also reduced to their lowest since records began in 1950.

Total casualties were down by 3 per cent to 10,950 and serious injuries by 6 per cent to 1,597.

Car deaths also reached a record low, down from 94 to 72. There were reductions for other types of vehicle except vans and lorries, where deaths increased from two to 14 - the highest level for seven years.

Pedestrian deaths fell from 59 to 41, but remained three higher than in 2013.

Cyclist deaths fell from eight to five, which was the lowest for eight years.

Deaths among motorcyclists were down three to 27.

One person died in a bus, the same number as in 2014, and there were two “other” deaths compared to nine before.

However, serious injuries in bus crashes went up from 28 to 49 - the highest for four years.

Child deaths were down from seven to five.

Neil Greig, the Scotland-based director of policy and research for motoring group IAM RoadSmart, said: “It’s good news that the long-term downward trends in deaths and serious injuries on Scotland’s roads continue, but the figures are still far too high.

“With over three deaths a week, it is essential the Scottish Government continues its successful partnership approach to road safety, in which IAM RoadSmart plays an important part.“Joint working and clear targets are clearly having a positive impact.

“Continued investment in better roads, plus recent suggestions that Scotland might finally introduce speed awareness courses and drug-driving laws mean the country is well placed to make further gains.

“The rise in goods vehicle related deaths is worrying and is probably linked to the surge in van use.” on Scotland’s roads. Companies, both large and small, must take more responsibility for the behaviour of their employees or face the public scrutiny that bad driving can bring on social media, or in the worst cases in the courts.

“Surveys show that white van man is most likely to use a phone behind the wheel and engage in other illegal behaviours.

“IAM RoadSmart support police campaigns to crack down on such behaviour but we also need more firms to step up to the plate and take occupational road safety more seriously.”

The Scottish Government’s Transport Scotland agency, which published the figures, said they showed it was on track to meet its 2020 casualty reduction targets, set under the Scotland’s Road Safety Framework to 2020 strategy.

Transport minister Humza Yousaf said: “The figures show the continued downward trend in road casualties and the key Framework 2015 milestone reductions are being met.

“We remain on track to achieve significant casualty reductions towards our 2020 targets, as well as realising our vision where no one is killed on Scotland’s roads and the injury rate is much reduced.”

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