IAM urgents Treasury to maintain road safety spending
Since such targets were first introduced in 1990, an estimated 31,000 lives have been saved, benefiting the UK economy by a massive £50 billion, says the IAM.
Neil Greig, IAM director of policy and research, commented: 'The impact of casualty reduction targets has been enormous. If we continue at our current rate of investment, annual road deaths in the UK could slip well below 2,000 by 2020 – a further saving of £4bn and 2,500 lives over the next decade. Punitive cuts in road safety budgets will jeopardize these huge financial and social gains.
'IAM research shows that continued investment in road safety over the next few years will produce substantial rates of return to the economy. Our message is simple: spending on road safety saves money. Fewer casualties mean reduced NHS bills, fewer people absent from work, less congestion and much lower costs associated with long-term injuries.'
The DfT has already announced a 27% cut in road safety revenue funding and a £17.2 million cut in capital grants for road safety as well as other cuts in major projects.
Mr Greig added: 'Every death on UK roads costs society £1.68m. We need investment in safer drivers, safer cars and safer roads if we are to maintain current trends and make Britain’s roads the safest in the world.'