Figures for injuries on Leeds roads at a 40-year low

LESSONS IN LIFE: Students from Leeds College of Building learn about road safety with West Yorkshire Fire and Rescue teams and Leeds City Council's road safety team.
LESSONS IN LIFE: Students from Leeds College of Building learn about road safety with West Yorkshire Fire and Rescue teams and Leeds City Council's road safety team.
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The number of people injured on the roads in Leeds last year was the lowest for more than 40 years.

There were 2,686 casualties in 2011 – the lowest recorded figures since the district was formed in 1974.

The figures represent a reduction of 78 on the equivalent 2010 figures.

The number of people killed or seriously injured on the roads fell in 2011 to 297 – seven fewer than the previous year and a 14% reduction on the 2006-10 five-year average.

A total of 2,389 road users were slightly injured, a reduction of 71 on the figure for 2010.

Over 49,000 pupils of all ages took part in road safety education programmes last year.

The courses, run by Leeds City Council’s influencing travel behaviour team, are designed to influence young people’s attitudes to road safety and to encourage them to choose lower carbon forms of travel, particularly for more local journeys such as getting to and from school.

The team uses drama, musical roadshows, and rescue demonstrations by the fire service to get the message across.

The work of the team is part of a wider programme which includes engineering and infrastructure measures designed to make the roads safer.

Coun Richard Lewis, Leeds City Council’s executive member for development said: “It’s good to see the downward trend continuing, but even one death or injury on our roads is one too many.

“We must remember that each and every one of these casualty figures represents a personal story or pain and loss. So often, we hear people refer to road traffic collisions to as ‘accidents’, but in many cases these collisions could have easily been avoided had one or more of the road users involved behaved or acted differently.

“That’s why educating people about using the roads safely and sustainably is crucial to our efforts. The work we do with partners in the fire service and the police to help young people understand the issues is particularly important.

“If we can positively influence young people’s attitudes now, then we stand a chance of ensuring that they become safe and sustainable road users for life.”