Two road safety organisations warn of road safety budget cuts
A report published last week concluded that austerity measures were putting lives at risk. The report by the Parliamentary Advisory Council for Transport Safety (PACTS) said that despite substantial falls in road deaths between 2007-2010, there had been an increase in the first six months of 2011, and the number of road deaths in the UK was expected to increase for the first time since 2003.
Robert Gifford, Executive Director of PACTs said that: “This report has a clear message to Government: the focus on austerity is putting lives at risk.” He said: “PACTS believes that we need a new national debate about the future of road safety, based on the principles that road deaths are preventable and that, where measures are both cost-effective and achievable, society has a moral and economic responsibility to act for the public benefit.”
The PACTS report was published just two weeks after the Institute of Advanced Motorists (IAM) released findings which showed that councils were cutting their road safety budgets by an average of 15% compared to average cuts of 6% across other services.
However there were quite significant variations with one authority cutting their road safety budget by 70%. The IAM report also included results from a survey of public opinion which showed overwhelmingly that people regard road safety education, training and publicity as important and gave a clear indication that the public would welcome the re-introduction of road safety targets.
The Chair of Road Safety GB, Alan Kennedy, commenting on the report said that the challenge for road safety professionals would be to work in a more creative way and acknowledged that they remained committed to providing a high quality professional service.
More on the IAM report
More on the PACTS report