Motorcycle Deaths Fall in 2023

Motorcycle deaths in the UK fell more than for any other vehicle category in 2023 compared to the previous year

Motorcycle Deaths Fall in 2023

The number of motorcycle deaths in 2023 was lower than in 2022, with the difference being enough to give motorbikes the largest change in fatalities year-on-year of any vehicle category.

According to the figures from the Department of Transport, 306 motorcycle users were killed on UK roads in 2023, compared to 350 in 2022. This marks a year-on-year reduction of 12.6 per cent.

No other vehicle category was reduced by as much, proportionally speaking. 

The number of motorcycle users killed in 2023 was also - importantly - lower than it had been in any pre-pandemic year back to 2014. The lowest in that period was 2015, which saw 408 motorcycle user fatalities, while the peak was shared between 2017 and 2019 with 470 motorcycle user fatalities each.

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There were 39 fewer car occupants killed in 2023 than in 2022, with 739 killed last year compared to 788 the year before, and 10 fewer goods vehicle occupants.

In total, there were 1,645 road fatalities last year in the UK, compared to 1,711 in 2022, marking a reduction of 3.9 per cent year-on-year.

There were groups that rose, though, most notably pedestrians. Last year, 407 were killed, whereas in 2022 the number was 385, meaning a 5.7 per cent increase year-on-year.

This is despite changes to the Highway Code made with a view to making the roads safer for the most vulnerable users. Notably, pedestrians now have right of way at junctions, meaning vehicles have to stop for them rather than the other way around, which was previously the case.

The RAC says the statistics for pedestrians should be a “red flag” for the government which highlights how dangerous UK roads remain.

RAC head of policy Simon Williams said: “While there has been a slight decline in the year-on-year number of road users killed in crashes, the larger proportion of pedestrian fatalities, which is now at its highest since before the pandemic, should be a red flag to the Government signifying just how dangerous our roads still are.

“It’s extremely concerning that these figures have risen in the two years since the Highway Code was changed with a view to making the roads safer for the most vulnerable users.

“We hope there isn’t a negative link between the two, but with RAC research showing a third of drivers think pedestrians now face greater danger at junctions due to the changes, there seem to be questions that need answering.”