Road safety charity calls for pedestrian protection focus

IAM highlights requirements for pedestrian protection measures to prevent a rise in casualties amongst vulnerable road users involved in collisions with vehicles.

The Institute of Advanced Motorists (IAM) has revealed that nearly 18,000 pedestrians were injured in accidents involving vehicles in the last full year with analysis available. The charity is now calling for an even greater focus on pedestrian protection to make cars safer and raise awareness of the risks.

The figures come from a Freedom of Information (FOI) request made by the IAM asking for details of the most common pairs of contributory factors reported together by the police attending the scene of an accident in 2013.

Police can record up to six contributory factors from a list of 77 for each incident to explain why they think a crash took place but the top two give the most obvious reasons for the incident. The statistics come from an analysis of the most recent full year data covering the whole of 2013.

Last month the IAM reported that ‘failure to look properly’ and ‘failure to judge another person’s path or speed’ was the biggest pairing of factors when it came to vehicles in accidents. And now the pairings of factors listed by police for all pedestrian casualties in accidents can be revealed.

‘Pedestrian failed to look properly’ with ‘pedestrian careless, reckless or in a hurry’ were named as factors in 4,100 casualty accidents, or 23% of the overall total putting them clearly at Number 1.

The remainder of the factor combinations listed are as follows:

2 ‘Pedestrian crossing road masked by stationary or parked vehicle’ with ‘pedestrian failed to look properly’ – 1,961 casualties (11%)
3 ‘Pedestrian failed to judge vehicle’s path or speed’ with ‘pedestrian careless, reckless or in a hurry – 1,204 casualties (7%)
4 ‘Pedestrian crossing road masked by stationary or parked vehicle’ with ‘pedestrian careless, reckless or in a hurry’ – 1,013 casualties (6%)

The IAM Manifesto makes a number of suggestions on how to protect pedestrians, including making road safety education part of the national curriculum, making pedestrian safety a bigger factor in vehicle design and a long-term engineering programme to deliver safer roads in the UK.

Sarah Sillars, IAM chief executive officer, said: “Pedestrian fatalities are rising faster than any other group right now so it is vital that drivers are more sympathetic and aware of pedestrians when they make their journeys. There is no need to blame any party when it comes to how to reduce the numbers of people killed and injured on our roads – all road users need to look out for each other and ensure we minimise the impact of our own and others unpredictable behaviour.”

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Human Factors

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