Britain's first Road Safety Index is launched

Friday 30 August 2013

Britain’s first Local Road Safety Index has been launched as children head back to school

85,814 child casualties (fatal, seriously injured and slightly injured) and 557,200 road collisions occurred in areas around schools in the past six years.

As the new school year approaches, AXA Car Insurance and Road Safety Analysis safety research and have launched Britain’s first Local Road Safety Index. It will help parents better understand the risks associated with the roads around their local schools to keep their children safe.

Figures used as part of the Index reveals that more than half-a-million collisions have taken place on local roads within a 500 metre radius of British schools in the past six years, resulting in 85,000 child casualties.

The Local Road Safety Index has been developed by analysing a total of 200,000 pieces of data relating to the immediate areas surrounding Britain’s 29,142 schools. This data reveals the total number of collisions and casualties in these areas, including children and adults, and if they were pedestrians, cyclists or vehicle occupants.

A recent report by AXA Car Insurance revealed that almost nine out of ten parents want the ability to access road safety information relating to their local school area, yet there was previously nothing to enable them to do so. Today’s Local Road Safety Index provides parents, schools and local authorities with the information they need to understand how safe – or not – their local roads are. It will also help to develop and tailor road safety education while determining the specific road infrastructure required – such as speed bumps, crossings or other road calming measures - to further reduce collisions and casualties.

The data, relating to the 500 metre radius around British schools and covering the last six years, revealed some concerning statistics, which can be broken down by local authority, region, and city:

  • Overall, there have been 557,200 vehicle collisions
  • There are, on average, six collisions per school per year
  • There have been a total of 130,659 pedestrian casualties – that’s 21,777 per year
  • There have been a total of 172,495 cyclist casualties
  • 37 per cent of local school areas have had at least one child casualty each year
  • 85,814 children have been casualties on local roads around British schools – equating to as many as 1,190 every month
  • Fortunately, 5,831 schools (20 per cent) have reported no child casualties in the past six years

James Barclay of AXA Car Insurance, commented, “Child road safety is of paramount importance to everyone in Britain so the more that can be done to understand the facts, and therefore adapt infrastructure or education methods, the better. The Local Road Safety Index is a big step towards being able to truly understand how the infrastructure within local areas around schools needs to be developed to make roads safer for children.” 

Dan Campsall, director of Road Safety Analysis, commented, “Translating this wealth of data into something that is meaningful for parents, teachers and community leaders has its challenges. However, it is important that these groups are able to understand the immediate road risks around their local schools if they are going to work effectively to secure safer communities for children in the future.

“The data can be used to support changes in local road safety education as well as the road environment, therefore helping to further safeguard pupils across the country.”

For more information about the index, please click here.

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