Four priorities for road safety15 May 2024

RACF signs manifesto with 29 other organisations

The RAC Foundation is one of 30 organisations to sign up to a safety manifesto which it is hoped the next government will adopt to kick start renewed progress on cutting death and injury on the roads.

The manifesto – coordinated by the Parliamentary Advisory Council for Transport Safety (PACTS) – identifies four priorities for whichever party wins the next election:

  1. Developing a National Road Safety Strategy – Implement a Safe System Strategy focused on prevention, protection, and post-collision response, coupled with evidence-based targets and robust safety performance indicators.
  2. Establishing a Road Safety Investigation Branch – An independent body modelled after existing transportation safety branches to analyse road incidents and provide actionable insights for preventing future tragedies.
  3. Introducing Graduated Driver Licensing – A progressive licensing system to support young drivers by limiting high-risk driving situations, a measure proven to reduce fatalities by up to 40%.
  4. Adopting Advanced Vehicle Safety Regulations – Immediate implementation of the world-leading vehicle safety standards, mandating critical technologies such as Automatic Emergency Braking and Intelligent Speed Assistance.

The UK has seen a stagnation in road safety improvements since 2010, from being a global leader in road safety, it is now lagging behind other nations.

Every day, five people die on UK roads, with more than 30,000 individuals killed or seriously injured annually, amounting to a societal and economic cost estimated at £43.5 billion each year.

Steve Gooding, director of the RAC Foundation, said:

“It’s rare to get 30 or so organisations to agree on anything so for so many companies and road safety groups to sign up to this manifesto shows just how urgently new impetus is needed to start reducing again death and injury on our highways.

“For years, if not decades, the benefits of graduated licensing have been talked about and analysed and shown to potentially prevent significant levels of harm on the road. Now there seems to be a increasing groundswell of opinion that the time has come for its introduction. Perhaps the last people who need convincing are our politicians and hopefully the united message being voiced today will be heard by those with the power to act to keep young people safe as they start their driving lives.”

In 2022, the current government promised to implement a road safety investigation branch following a three-year pilot scheme run by the RAC Foundation.

The Foundation has also been a long-standing advocate of graduated driver licensing to help protect newly-qualified drivers in the first few weeks and months after they pass their tests and during which many will have a crash.

On 7 May 2024 a ten-minute rule bill was introduced in the House of Commons by Kim Leadbetter MP calling for the introduction of GDL.



Philip Gomm – Head of External Communications – RAC Foundation

[email protected] | 07711 776448

Notes to editors:

The RAC Foundation is a transport policy and research organisation which 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. For more information visit