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LABOUR’S EMILY BROTHERS SUPPORTS PEOPLE IN SUTTON TO LOOK OUT FOR EACH OTHER

MONDAY 17 NOVEMBER 2014
   

 

Labour’s Parliamentary Candidate for Sutton and Cheam, Emily Brothers is supporting national Road Safety Week, 17-23 November 2014, by calling on the Government and people in Sutton and Cheam to ‘look out for each other.’
Road Safety Week, coordinated by the road safety charity Brake, is the UK’s leading event to promote safer road use. This year Road Safety Week calls on all road users to “look out for each other” to help stop the five deaths that still happen every day on UK roads, but particularly to protect people cycling and walking. It will be supported by a week of increased police enforcement coordinated by the Association of Chief Police Officers.
This awareness raising campaign is being rolled out only days after five teenagers were involved in a fatal road accident in the Doncaster area.
After years of consistent progress in reducing deaths and serious injuries, sharp increases in the past two quarters in 2014 have alarmed road safety experts and campaigners. Government figures released in October 2014 showed that deaths and serious injuries on the roads rose by 4% in the first quarter of the year, compared to 2013. Cyclist casualties rose by 18% in comparison with last spring.

 

 

Photograph – Emily Standing by Roundabout on Sutton Common Road


Ms Brothers cited examples of accidents black spots that haven’t been resolved locally. She expressed concern that the local authority hadn’t been responsive to resident’s worries about traffic not paying sufficient respect to the zebra crossing on Malden Road alongside Cheam Park, as well as driver’s confusion over the purpose of the roundabout on Sutton Common Road. However, Ms Brothers was pleased to note that Transport for London are now accelerating plans for a new pelican crossing on Malden Road alongside Cheam Park.
      

 

Photograph – Emily Standing by Malden Road Zebra Crossing Alongside Cheam Park

 

 

Emily Brothers is alarmed by the spread of shared spaces – areas and crossings that mix pedestrians with road users. As a blind person herself, Ms Brothers is very aware of the dangers that arise from the removal of kerbs, as she is unable to distinguish between the road and pavement.

 

Photograph – Emily Standing on Corner Without Kerb Near Iceland in Worcester Park
 


Ms Brothers is calling on the Government to end complacency on road safety and restore targets to reduce deaths and serious injuries on the roads. She said:
“This Road Safety Week I am calling on people in Sutton and Cheam to look out for each other. Whether you be a pedestrian, cyclist or motorist, we all need to respect each other on the roads.
“Worrying increases in deaths and serious injuries on our roads this year show why we cannot take safety for granted. Five people are still killed on Britain’s roads every day and each one is a tragedy.
“This Road Safety Week it is time the Government ended their complacency on road safety and reversed their out of touch decision to axe targets to cut the number of people killed or seriously injured on our roads.”
Richard Burden MP, Labour’s Shadow Roads Minister said:
“What gets measured gets done. Ministers must admit that it was wrong to scrap targets to cut deaths and serious injuries on the roads, which drove real progress in road safety.
“From pedestrian and cyclist, to motorist or lorry driver, we all rely on roads and road safety is everyone’s responsibility. Strong leadership by Government is crucial for progress. Unfortunately, since 2010 Ministers have pushed ahead with higher HGV speed limits on shaky evidence, completely failed to meet the Department for Transport’s deadline for improving young driver safety and axed 10,000 front line police posts who are vital for enforcement.
“This Government just seems to be asleep at the wheel.”

Brake
Brake is an independent road safety charity. Brake exists to stop the five deaths and 63 serious injuries that happen on UK roads every day and to care for families bereaved and seriously injured in road crashes.
Road Safety Week
Road Safety Week is the UK’s flagship event to promote safer road use, coordinated annually by the charity Brake and involving thousands of schools, communities and organisations across the country. This year’s Road Safety Week takes place 17-23 November 2014 and calls on all road users to ‘look out for each other’ to help stop the five deaths that still happen every day on UK roads. Brake are specifically calling for action to stop ‘selfish driving’ and protect people cycling and walking. Brake’s research have shown that almost a million fixed penalty notices were issued for ‘careless driving’ and speeding offences in 2013 – almost two a minute – and that two thirds of primary school children think roads are unsafe for walking and cycling.
Road Safety Statistics
Figures from April-June 2014 show that the number of deaths and serious injuries on the roads rose by 4%, in comparison with the year before. 3,530 cyclists were killed or seriously injured in the year ending June 2014, an increase of 10% compared to the previous year. After years of consistently improving results, the two quarters of worsening figures in 2014 have alarmed road safety experts and campaigners

Figures from: Reported Road Casualties in Great Britain: Quarterly Provisional Estimates Q2 2014
Targets for deaths and serious injuries
In Government Labour had set proposed targets for casualty and fatality reduction until 2020, which were abandoned by the Government in the Department for Transport’s Strategic Framework for Road Safety in May 2012. The targets for reducing deaths and serious injuries for 2010 were either been met or on target to be met when Labour left office. There are now almost 17,000 fewer deaths or serious injuries in a year than there were in the mid-1990s.
Government Policies since 2010

HGV Speed Limits: In July 2014, the Department for Transport announced an increase HGV speed limits from 40 to 50 mph on single carriageways, despite their own impact assessment showing that it would increase deaths and serious injuries on these roads.
https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/336315/hgv-single_-carriageway-impact-assessment.pdf 
Young Driver Green Paper: The Government were meant to publish proposals for improving the training and testing of new drivers to help improve young driver safety by December 2013. http://transparency.number10.gov.uk/business-plan/11/47
Cuts to Policing: The Coalition’s 2010 Spending Review cut police budgets by 20%, which has resulted in 10,000 fewer frontline police posts:  http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-29105022

 


   

 

 

 

 

 

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