Brake urges UK leadership as UN Road Safety Week launches

News from Brake
Monday 6 May 2019
Brake, the road safety charity, has called for greater road safety leadership from the UK, both at home and internationally, as the fifth United Nations Global Road Safety Week, held from 6-12 May, kicks off.
With Global Road Safety Week urging partners to Save Lives #SpeakUp, Brake is calling attention to the preventable epidemic of road death which sees a shocking 1.35 million people die on the world's roads each year with road traffic injuries the leading global killer of people aged 5 to 29. Britain has some of the safest roads in Europe, with 27.1 deaths per million inhabitants, the fewest across the 28 EU member states, however, Britain’s road safety record is stagnating and has seen little improvement over the past decade - in 2017, the latest figures available, there were 1,793 road deaths in Britain compared to the 2010-14 average of 1,799.
Brake believes that safe and healthy mobility is everyone’s human right and is urging the Government to adopt a Vision Zero approach to road safety, with targets for the elimination of deaths and serious injuries on the road and significant investment into improving Britain’s road transport infrastructure. The charity is calling on the Government to follow a design-led approach to safety, known as safe systems, which ensures that all the elements of road infrastructure, the roads, the vehicles, their speeds and the road users, are managed to ensure that if a crash takes place, a death or serious injury can’t occur.
The road safety charity is also urging the Government to play an active role in global road safety, ensuring that best practice being developed in the UK, such Transport for London’s Bus Safety Standard, is shared internationally to help fight the global epidemic of road death.
Joshua Harris, director of campaigns for Brake, said:
“Britain’s road safety record is stagnating, threatening our position as a global leader in road safety. The tragic reality of this is that, every day, more than 70 people are killed or seriously injured on British roads, causing devastation to families across the country. We urge the Government to listen to the call of UN Road Safety Week and show leadership by setting targets to eliminate deaths and serious injuries from our roads. Getting around in safe and healthy ways is everyone’s human right and we must act now to make this right a reality, both at home and abroad.”
Notes to Editors
About Brake
Brake is a national road safety and sustainable transport charity, founded in 1995, that exists to stop the needless deaths and serious injuries that happen on roads every day, make streets and communities safer for everyone, and care for families bereaved and injured in road crashes. Brake promotes road safety awareness, safe and sustainable road use, and effective road safety policies.
We do this through national campaigns, community education, services for road safety professionals and employers, and by coordinating the UK's flagship road safety event every November, Road Safety Week. Brake is a national, government-funded provider of support to families and individuals devastated by road death and serious injury, including through a helpline and support packs.
Road crashes are not accidents; they are devastating and preventable events, not chance mishaps. Calling them accidents undermines work to make roads safer, and can cause insult to families whose lives have been torn apart by needless casualties.