Saturday, 8 November 2014

Country roads: more dangerous than you think . . .

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Country roads: more dangerous than you think

Cited at:
http://www.channel4.com/news/country-road-deaths-more-dangerous-than-motorways


New research finds that the number of people killed on country roads each year is eleven times higher than on motorways, and rising.

The report by the Department for Transport finds that deaths are disproportionately likely to occur on rural roads. In the last year they carried for 53 percent of traffic, but accounted for almost two thirds of all road deaths.

In 2013, the total number of road deaths in Great Britain decreased by two percent on the previous year, but the number of deaths on rural roads was up by almost three percent.

Launching a new public awareness campaign, road safety minister Robert Goodwill said: "I want the public to understand these risks and adapt their driving to the conditions they face. We are urging drivers to read the road ahead, select a safe speed and brake before the bend."

The Department for Transport road safety campaign 'THINK!' has launched a new advert to illustrate the unseen hazards on rural roads where, on average, three deaths happen every day.

Young people are one of the groups most at risk on rural roads, with 17-24 year-olds accounting for a quarter of all those killed and seriously injured.

The government says its findings suggest many drivers are failing to anticipate dangers on the road ahead.

It found that its research mirrored newly published casualty statistics which showed that the most commonly reported contributory factor to being killed or seriously injured on country roads was motorists losing control, often because they were driving too fast for the conditions.

The campaign is backed by British Touring Car Championship driver James Cole. "Being a responsible driver, I try to anticipate hidden hazards and brake before the bend, and this is critical on country roads - you just don't know what's around the next corner," he said.

In total, 1,070 people died on country roads in 2013. Country roads are classed as roads outside urban settlements with a population of more than 10,000.



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