An analysis of collisions & casualties: 18 months pre and post launch Dorset County Council

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1 An analysis of collisions & casualties: 18 months pre and post launch Dorset County Council Completed by Michael Potter October

2 Figures detailed in this report have been derived from the STATS 19 forms completed by Dorset Police. STATS 19 forms collect detailed data on individual road collisions, covering the circumstances of the accident and the casualties and vehicles involved. It is acknowledged that there are limitations with Stats 19 data; however, it is considered the best dataset available at this very early stage in the continuing evaluation of the no excuse campaign. SUMMARY The no excuse campaign launched in January 2010 Latest 3 years Stats 19 data has been used for the purpose of this report July 2008 to December 2009 is the 18 months pre no excuse January 2010 to June 2011 is the 18 months post no excuse This report will look at both the DCC area as a whole and each of the 9 sectors that fall within DCC. Casualty data for The Borough of Poole and Bournemouth Borough Council are not included in this report. The no excuse campaign has coincided with the lowest casualty figures on record for the Dorset County Council (DCC) area. Due to the nature of road traffic collisions and casualties, there is an appreciation that no single factor in isolation is likely to influence driver behaviour and attitude and result in a reduction in road traffic casualties. The economic climate is a factor and it is important to note that the lowest casualty figures on record for the DCC area also coincided with the current economic downturn. The following chart, put together by the Department for Transport, shows the level of GDP against the number of road traffic fatalities. Year on year change in road deaths, traffic and GDP: GB : 10% 16% Year on year change in traffic/gdp 8% 5% 3% 0% -3% -5% -8% Road deaths GDP Vehicle traffic % 8% 4% 0% -4% -8% Year on year change in road deaths -12% -10% -16% 2

3 Nationally, fatal road traffic casualties fell by 17% in 2010 against 2009(Reported Road Casualties Great Britain Main Results: 2010). Fatal casualties in DCC fell by 57% in 2010 against 2009; from 23 to 10. Nationally, the number of people killed or seriously injured (KSI) fell by 9% in 2010 against 2009 (Reported Road Casualties Great Britain Main Results: 2010). KSI casualties fell by 17% in 2010 against 2009 for DCC; from 260 to 215. Nationally the total number of casualties (all severities) fell by 6% in 2010 against 2009 (Reported Road Casualties Great Britain: 2010). The total number of casualties fell by 11% in 2010 against 2009 for DCC; from 1596 to Below is a chart showing the latest rolling annual KSI casualty figure for DCC: The above chart shows a notable downward trend in the number of KSI casualties since the launch of no excuse. Please note all data for 2011 remains subject to change until final sign off in April

4 Enforcement Sectors For the purposes of no excuse, Dorset has been split into 11 enforcement Sectors. The sectors represent the areas covered by each enforcement team: 4

5 COLLISIONS AND CASUALTIES PRE & POST NO EXCUSE Collisions: Overall, collisions resulting in personal injury fell by 17%, from 1814 in the 18 months pre no excuse, to 1505 in the 18 months post no excuse. KSI collisions fell by 23%, from 369 to 283. The table below shows the number of collisions by severity for the DCC area pre and post no excuse by sector: Casualties: Overall, road traffic casualties fell by 19%, from 2581 in the 18 months pre no excuse, to 2080 in the 18 months post no excuse. KSI casualties fell by 25%, from 425 to 317. The number of people killed on DCC roads have fallen from 38 for the 18 months pre no excuse to 19 in the 18 months post no excuse, a 50% reduction. The table below shows the number of casualties by severity for the DCC area pre and post no excuse by sector: 5

6 There have been reductions in the total number of casualties across each sector. Perhaps the most notable reductions occurred in Sectors 6 and 7; 38% (from 214 to 132) and 33% (245 to 165). Sectors 6 and 7 also experienced the largest reductions in KSI casualties; 45% (43 to 22) and 49% (35 to 21). Reductions in the number of KSI casualties were experienced across all but 2 of the 9 sectors in DCC; Sector 5 and Christchurch had the same number of KSI casualties during the 18 months post no excuse as the 18 months pre no excuse. Sector 5 and Christchurch are predominantly urban in nature with a great proportion of traffic flow occurring on their urban road network. Generally speaking the greatest reductions in both KSI and Slight casualties have been experienced in rural areas. No excuse was based on a similar project undertaken by Essex County Council where notable reductions in KSI and Slight casualties occurred predominantly in rural areas. It is important to note that Sector 2, a predominantly urban area experienced a 40% reduction in the number of KSI casualties, from 58 to 35. This would seem to go against the claims that only notable reductions occurred in rural areas. However, Sector 2 includes the Weymouth & Portland Borough Council area where a number of extensive road improvement works took place during the 18 months post the launch of no excuse in Weymouth Town which resulted in disruption to traffic. Investigations are ongoing in an attempt to understand whether the improvement works had a significant impact upon casualty reduction. Casualty Road User Group Breakdown: The table below shows the breakdown of casualties by road user group and severity for the DCC area pre and post no excuse : Pedal cyclists were the only road user group to experience an increase in casualties. The most notable increase in pedal cycle casualties is in KSI casualties. Each Sector experienced increases in pedal cycle KSI casualties in the 18 months post no excuse. This could be a reflection of the economic climate; with more people choosing to cycle. Pedal cyclists are considered to be one of the more vulnerable road user groups. If there is an increase in people using a more vulnerable form of travel then a rise in casualties could perhaps be expected. Pedal cycle casualties have also increased nationally. 6

7 Pedal cyclist KSI casualties accounted for 5% of all KSI casualties pre no excuse ; post no excuse they accounted for 14%. For the almost exclusively urban areas of Sector 2 and Christchurch, pedal cyclist KSI casualties accounted for 7% and 5% respectively of the Sector s KSI total pre no excuse, post no excuse they accounted for 20% and 24% respectively of the Sector s KSI total. This is perhaps to be expected as cycling is generally higher in urban areas, but nevertheless if efforts are to made to reduce/prevent pedal cycle casualties, this data may suggest that resources would be best utilised within Sector 2 and Christchurch. However, it is important to note that it cannot yet be determined whether the recent upward trend in pedal cyclist casualties is set to continue long term. Powered two wheeler (PTW) user KSI casualties accounted for 22% of all KSI casualties post no excuse. For Sector 4 PTW user KSI casualties accounted for 34% of the Sector s KSI total, this would perhaps suggest that PTW user KSI casualties should be a higher priority within Sector 4 as a target group for no excuse operations. See Appendix A for Casualty Road User Group Breakdown tables for each Sector. Vehicle Type Involvement in Collisions: The table below shows the breakdown of the types of vehicles that were in involved in personal injury collisions by severity within the DCC area pre and post no excuse. Please note, not all occupants of a vehicle involved in a collision necessarily sustained a personal injury: PTWs accounted for 18% of all vehicles involved in a KSI collision pre no excuse, post no excuse that accounted for 13%, an encouraging reduction. However, PTWs in Sector 4 which accounted for 20% of all vehicles involved in a KSI collision post no excuse. This information could be used as further evidence for PTWs to be high priority target group within Sector 4 for no excuse operations. See Appendix B for Vehicle Type Involvement in Collisions for each Sector. 7

8 Contributory Factors The table below is a breakdown of contributory factors for DCC by group showing the proportion each group accounted for both pre and post no excuse : The proportion of collisions occurring with human error recorded as a contributory factor accounted for the majority all reported contributory factors, both pre and post no excuse. This is also the case for each enforcement sector across Dorset. Driver/Rider human error contributory factors are included within the following groups: Injudicious action Driver/Rider error or reaction Impairment or distraction Behaviour or inexperience The majority of all reported contributory factors can be attributed to driver/rider human error for both Slight and KSI collisions. The proportion of reported contributory factors attributed to driver/rider human error for Slight collisions pre and post no excuse was 72% and 75% respectively. The proportion of reported contributory factors attributed to driver/rider human error for KSI collisions was 75% both pre and post no excuse. In each collision where a Road Environment contributory factor was recorded a contributory factor attributable to human error was also recorded. Although human error is not the only reported contributory factor in collisions, it is widely acknowledged that human error is a contributory factor in at least 95% of all road traffic collisions. See Appendix C for a breakdown of contributory factors for each Sector by group. 8

9 Top 5 contributory factors The table below shows the 5 most commonly reported individual contributory factors recorded for collisions within DCC both pre and post no excuse : With the exception of Slippery road (due to weather), the 5 most commonly reported contributory factors to collisions within the DCC area are attributable to human error for both Slight and KSI collisions. There wouldn t appear to be a significant difference between the Top 5 pre and post no excuse which would suggest that there remains a need to focus on road user behaviour. Top 5 contributory factor tables are available for each Sector. Human error accounts for the majority of the most commonly reported contributory factors within each Sector. See Appendix D for the Top 5 contributory factors for each Sector. See Appendix E for the list of all available Stats 19 contributory factors. 9

10 APPENDIX A Casualties Road User Group Breakdown by Sector 10

11 11

12 APPENDIX B Vehicle Type Involvement in Collisions by Sector 12

13 13

14 APPENDIX C Breakdown of contributory for each Sector by group 14

15 15

16 APPENDIX D Top 5 contributory factors by Sector 16

17 17

18 18

19 APPEDNDIX E Stats 19 contributory factors 19

20 End of Document 20

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