Shocking toll of deaths and injuries
Figures highlight the daily carnage, says safety boss
Someone is injured on Renfrewshire’s roads nearly every day, shock statistics reveal.
Transport Scotland say that 1,759 people were hurt in accidents over the last five years.
Cops were called out to 26 deaths on carriageways across the region.
Jason Wakeford, director of campaigns for road safety charity Brake, has called on the Scottish Parliament to cut the speed limit in built-up streets to 20 mph.
He said: “The figures graphically illustrate the daily carnage taking place on roads across Britain.
“Progress on road safety has stalled, pressing the need for a road collision investigation branch similar to those already in existence for air, rail and sea, so that lessons can be learned to prevent future crashes.
“Only through in- depth investigation at a national level can solutions be found to stem the needless deaths on the roads every day.
“A default 20mph limit across built up areas in Scotland offers a golden opportunity to save lives, promote sustainable transport and improve the environment.
“Travelling at lower speeds drastically reduces the risk of death and serious injury and encourages more walking and cycling – relieving pressure on the NHS and other public services.
“We are also calling for a review of speed limits on rural roads, where most deaths occur.”
Injuries on roads across the district are on the rise after a period of decline.
There were 430 people hurt on all carriageways five years ago.
This fell by a quarter to 319 just two years later.
But the number needing treatment after an accident surged to 363 in 2016 – almost one injury for every day of the year.
Among those hurt were 61 pedestrians.
Most of the injuries were sustained on minor roads in builtup areas and accounted for 168 treatments.
Across Scotland, 190 people were killed on the road – up 14 per cent from 2015.
As well as the increase in fatalities since 2015, the number of people seriously injured also increased by six per cent to 1,697.
Hol y rood launched a consultation into reducing the speed limit after a private member’s bill was lodged by Green MSP Mark Ruskell earlier this year.
Renfrewshire Council has backed the proposals and insists the change would reduce accidents, cut emissions, create a better environment for pedestrians and cyclists and save fuel and car maintenance costs for drivers.
Mum Cheryl Johnstone, 32, successfully campaigned to have the speed limit halved on the Gleniffer Braes where her daughter Niree, five, was killed.
The tot died after the car she was travelling in was involved in a collision on Gleniffer Road in July 2016.
Cheryl convinced council chiefs to instate a 30mph zone and was key in having road signs and markings renewed and overgrown shrubs hacked back.
Brake has also called for more support for those new to the road and backs technology, which restricts cars to the speed limit on different carriageways.
Mr Wakeford added: “New drivers continue to be involved in a disproportionately large number of collisions.
“Brake is calling for the introduction of a graduated licensing system, including a minimum learning period and restrictions for newly-qualified drivers, to help new motorists build up their skills and experience more safely and over a longer period of time.
“Th i s a p p ro a c h ha s dramatically reduced young road casualties in countries including Australia, New Zealand and across many states in the USA.”
Police Scotland has launched a safety scheme aimed at improving awareness among new drivers.
Officers have used footage of a real- life fatal car crash to warn young drivers about the dangers of peer pressure and inexperience.
It has been shown to 1,000 motorists, aged 17 to 25, with local authority bosses pledging to put all apprentices through the course.
Chief Superintendent Stewart Carle, head of Road Policing, says teams are working hard to target those breaking the law and reduce accidents.
He said: “Police officers have to deal with these tragic incidents far too often and through this we know that the effects are devastating, for bereaved families and those who have to cope with the impact these collisions have.
“Communities continue to raise road safety and speeding as issues of concern and reducing road casualties and fatalities.
“Our position is that road collisions are avoidable and so therefore are the deaths and injuries.
“We shall maintain a high visibility presence at priority locations on the road network across the country to monitor road- user behaviour and take necessary action when required.”
Shocking More than 1,700 people were hurt in accidents over the last five years in Renfrewshire
Frustrating Police say most accidents are avoidable
Grave concerns Chief Superintendent Stewart Carle