Road traffic accidents cost economy £15bn a year

The only acceptable number of casualties on our roads is zero, says road safety charity Brake

ROAD traffic accidents are costing the economy almost £15 billion a year, according to figures from the Department for Transport.

With each death on the road costing £1.74 million, the total cost of road traffic accidents in Britain in 2013 was an estimated £14.7 billion.

Last year’s cost to the economy included over £4.7 billion in damage to property and vehicles, £1.92 billion in lost output, £471 million in medical bills, £213 million in police costs and £139 million to cover insurance and administration costs.

The largest figure was attributed to ‘human costs’ which takes into account the effects of injury felt by the victims or their relatives and cost the economy £7.26 billion in 2013.

The report says that last year’s total figure was 3% down on the estimated costs of accidents in 2012. According to the figures, road deaths also fell by 2% to 1,713, the lowest number since records began in 1926.

Neil Greig, a spokesman for the Institute of Advanced Motorists, said: ‘The problem of death and serious injury among motorcycle riders remains and we want to see more use of training opportunities and partnerships to improve both skills and attitudes.’

Deputy Chief Executive of road safety charity Brake, Julie Townsend, said: ‘Road casualties in the UK are falling, but they are not falling fast enough.

‘Since 2010, progress has stalled dramatically. At this rate, it will be many more decades before we reach the only acceptable number of casualties on our roads, and that number is zero.’

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