Young drivers crashes - mapping the casualties 27 May 2014

The impact of young driver crashes

For the first time the human cost of crashes involving young drivers has been plotted across 49 different areas of Britain highlighting significant regional variations.

Nearly one in eight (11.9%) of all road casualties are hurt or killed in collisions involving a car driver aged 17-19.

This is despite 17-19 year-olds making up only 1.5% of licensed drivers.

The proportion of casualties is highest in Dyfed Powys at almost one in five (18.2%).

This is followed by Gwent (17%), Cumbria and North Wales (15.8%), Northern and Grampian (15.7%) and Cornwall (15.5%).

London had the smallest proportion (5.6%).

The work has been done by the Transport Research Laboratory (TRL) in a report commissioned by the RAC Foundation.

TRL also made a conservative estimate of what the reduction in casualties would be in each area if a system of graduated driving licensing (GDL) was introduced.

Based on the experience of other countries where GDL is in operation, the report authors concluded that across Britain about 4,500 fewer people would be hurt in an average year. This includes about 430 people who would otherwise have been killed or seriously injured.

(A full table of data by area follows in the notes to editors.)

Among other possible requirements (like a minimum learner period and lower alcohol limit for new drivers), GDL schemes typically place temporary restrictions on newly qualified young drivers in the first few months after they pass their tests. These restrictions can include a limit on the number of young passengers they can carry and a late night curfew. The aim of GDL is to limit young drivers’ exposure to risk until they have gained experience.

Currently one in five young drivers will have an accident within six months of passing their test. Novice young drivers are at particular risk because of both their lack of experience (which affects new drivers of all ages to some degree) and the biological and behavioural characteristics of youth.

Professor Stephen Glaister, director of the RAC Foundation, said:

“Whichever way you cut it young drivers pose a significant and disproportionate risk to themselves and to others and it is in rural areas where the casualty rate is highest.

“The government has repeatedly delayed announcing its strategy to help reduce young driver accidents but here is yet another piece of evidence which shows graduated licensing can significantly cut death and injury.

“The irony is that while ministers here prevaricate, action is being taken just across the Irish Sea. Earlier this month a bill was put before the Northern Ireland Assembly which would see the introduction of many of the measures this government has ruled out.

“We should all have an interest in preserving young drivers’ lives rather than exposing them to undue risk at the stage of their driving careers where they are most vulnerable. This is about ensuring their long term safety and mobility. Not curtailing it. ” 

ENDS

Contacts:

RAC Foundation:

Philip Gomm – Head of External Communications

Philip.gomm@racfoundation.org | 020 7747 3445 | 07711 776448 | 020 7389 0601 (ISDN)

Notes to editors:

The RAC Foundation is a transport policy and research organisation that explores the economic, mobility, safety and environmental issues relating to roads and their users. The Foundation publishes independent and authoritative research with which it promotes informed debate and advocates policy in the interest of the responsible motorist.

The RAC Foundation is a registered charity, number 1002705.

The full report is available to download:

http://www.racfoundation.org/assets/rac_foundation/content/downloadables/graduated_driver_licensing_regional_analysis_trl_270514.pdf

On 12 May 2014 the Northern Ireland Executive introduced the Road Traffic Amendment Bill into the Assembly:

http://www.northernireland.gov.uk/news-doe-120514-new-drink-drive

To view a regional casualty map follow this link:

https://www.google.com/fusiontables/embedviz?q=select+col3%3E%3E1+from+1iuSDAQgO8Rh0GdiYdJuQtFpOmio1IOLJt56xqYXK&viz=MAP&h=false&lat=55.685167619956054&lng=-2.712952761718721&t=1&z=5&l=col3%3E%3E1&y=2&tmplt=2&hml=K

The casualty map is available to embed in your site using this code with a credit to the RAC Foundation:

<iframe width="500" height="500" scrolling="no" frameborder="no" src="https://www.google.com/fusiontables/embedviz?q=select+col3%3E%3E1+from+1iuSDAQgO8Rh0GdiYdJuQtFpOmio1IOLJt56xqYXK&amp;viz=MAP&amp;h=false&amp;lat=55.685167619956054&amp;lng=-2.712952761718721&amp;t=1&amp;z=5&amp;l=col3%3E%3E1&amp;y=2&amp;tmplt=2&amp;hml=KML"></iframe>

The numbers above have been calculated by looking at a five year (2008-12) average of official police (Stats19) accident data.

A casualty is defined as: a person killed or injured in an accident. Casualties are sub-divided into

killed, seriously injured and slightly injured.

 

Country

Region

Proportion of all casualties hurt in collisions involving a 17-19 year-old driver

Expected annual reduction in number of those killed or seriously injured (KSI) in collisions involving a 17-19 year-old driver

Expected annual reduction in number of all casualties  (including KSI) hurt in collisions involving a 17-19 year-old driver

Expected cost saving (£ million)

 
 

England

Avon and Somerset

13.0%

11

121

5.2

 

Bedfordshire

13.0%

5

52

2.2

 

Berkshire

11.7%

4

60

2.3

 

Buckinghamshire

12.4%

6

66

2.8

 

Cambridgeshire

11.6%

7

70

3.4

 

Cheshire

12.7%

11

104

4.8

 

Cleveland

13.8%

3

35

1.5

 

Cornwall

15.5%

4

60

2.1

 

Cumbria

15.8%

5

53

2.2

 

Derbyshire

13.3%

8

93

3.9

 

Devon

13.1%

6

96

3.3

 

Dorset

14.0%

7

66

3.2

 

Durham

14.1%

4

54

2.2

 

Essex

13.8%

16

136

7.1

 

Gloucestershire

14.2%

4

43

1.8

 

Greater London

5.6%

20

254

10.1

 

Greater Manchester

9.7%

9

141

5

 

Hampshire & IoW

13.1%

15

141

6.7

 

Hertfordshire

13.1%

8

93

3.7

 

Humberside

13.8%

10

91

4.4

 

Kent

13.9%

12

172

6.3

 

Lancashire

13.5%

15

153

6.8

 

Leicestershire

10.7%

7

69

3.1

 

Lincolnshire

14.2%

9

84

4.0

 

Merseyside

9.2%

8

81

3.8

 

Norfolk

14.0%

8

65

3.5

 

North Yorkshire

14.0%

11

76

4.6

 

Northamptonshire

12.9%

7

43

2.9

 

Northumbria

11.8%

8

104

4.0

 

Nottinghamshire

12.0%

9

87

4.1

 

Oxfordshire

11.5%

6

46

2.5

 

South Yorkshire

13.9%

11

125

5.2

 

Staffordshire

14.0%

6

111

3.5

 

Suffolk

13.5%

5

63

2.5

 

Surrey

13.3%

8

138

4.6

 

Sussex

12.7%

15

122

6.6

 

Warwickshire

11.4%

6

45

2.4

 

West Mercia

15.2%

10

110

4.8

 

West Midlands

9.9%

15

160

6.9

 

West Yorkshire

10.2%

14

155

6.8

 

Wiltshire

13.1%

5

46

2.3

 

Scotland

Lothian & Borders and Dumfries & Galloway

11.6%

8

65

3.6

 

Northern and Grampian

15.7%

13

64

4.9

 

Strathclyde

11.4%

15

113

6.2

 

Tayside, Fife and Central

13.1%

9

57

3.6

 

Wales

Dyfed-Powys

18.2%

8

70

3.5

 

Gwent

17.0%

4

40

1.7

 

North Wales

15.8%

8

72

3.7

 

South Wales

15.2%

7

114

4.0

 
 

TOTAL (GB)

 11.9%

430

4479

200.3

 

 

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