South Yorkshire roads death toll reaches all-time low

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a TOTAL of 30 lives was lost on South Yorkshire’s roads last year – the lowest toll since records began.

In the year 2000 there were 62 people killed on the county’s roads, which rose to 71 in 2006. But in 2001 the figure fell to an all-time low.

Chief Superintendent Keith Lumley, of South Yorkshire Police, and chairman of the county’s Safer Roads Partnership, said: “Ten years ago in 2002, 63 people died on South Yorkshire roads, compared to 30 in 2011.

“This is testament to the hard work and dedication of our teams within the Safer Roads Partnership to make every road-user safer.

“Every death is however a tragedy and we will strive to reduce further the numbers of people killed on our roads through what we know are successful reduction methods. We will continue to run initiatives that have an impact in reducing risk and casualties, which include a range of targeted educational activities and road engineering improvements.

“Police enforcement will also target drivers who speed, drink and drive, drive under the influence of drugs, illegally use mobile phones, don’t wear seatbelts or drive in a dangerous manner.

“Prosecution is often a last resort but if it is proportionate and modifies behaviour, leading to a life being saved, it is worth it.”

Ken Wheat, manager of the South Yorkshire Safer Roads Partnership, said: “In addition to the record low for the number of people killed on the county’s roads, the figures also show killed and seriously injured casualties are down 8.7 per cent based on the three-year average.

“It is gratifying we have reached this record low and I would like to thank the public of South Yorkshire who have played a key role in helping us to reach this point.

“Estimates show each death on the roads costs the economy an estimated £1.8m. But more importantly behind each death there is a grieving family that has lost a loved one who cannot be replaced.

“For this reason the Partnership will proactively seek to continuously improve in this vital area of public health and wellbeing.”

The South Yorkshire Safer Roads Partnership is made up of Sheffield, Rotherham, Barnsley and Doncaster councils, the Highways Agency, and organisations including the Yorkshire Ambulance Service, South Yorkshire Police, South Yorkshire Safety Camera Partnership and South Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service.