Menu
Online Quote 0330 123 1444

Road Safety in the UK – How Safe Are Our Roads?

  • Share on Twitter
  • Share on LinkedIn
  • Share on Facebook

In time for Road Safety Week 2019, we conducted research into five years’ worth of the Government’s road accident figures up to 2018. The data from the Department for Transport shows that, when accounting for population, Powys had the most fatalities on its roads during 2013 and 2018, with a frightening 8 losses of life per year.

Road Safety

Project manager, Crown Oil, Dave Webb said: ”The figures are frightening and highlight the importance of taking care on the roads, especially as we head into winter. With shorter days and longer nights, drivers experience reduced visibility and poor grip from wet and icy roads.”

Mr Webb added: “There’s no real secret to driving safely. At Crown Oil, our fleet takes road safety seriously and we advise our drivers to keep within speed limits and keep a safe distance behind the vehicle in front. We regularly update our fleet to ensure the utmost safety of our drivers when they are out making deliveries.”

20 Deadliest Regions for UK Drivers

Local Authority Av. annual fatal accidents Population Av. annual fatal accidents per 100,000 people
Powys 10.6 132,447 8.00
East Lindsey 10.6 140,741 7.53
Perth and Kinross 10.8 151,290 7.14
Highland 16.4 235,540 6.96
Aberdeenshire 14.2 261,470 5.43
Cheshire East 16.4 380,790 4.31
Northumberland 13.2 319,000 4.14
East Riding of Yorkshire 13.4 339,614 3.95
Central Bedfordshire 10.8 283,606 3.81
Doncaster 10.8 310,542 3.48
Cornwall 19 563,600 3.37
Leeds 15.2 474,632 3.20
Cheshire West and Chester 10.8 340,502 3.17
Shropshire 15.2 493,200 3.08
Wiltshire 22 716,400 3.07
Sheffield 11.2 518,090 2.16
County Durham 17.8 862,000 2.06
Manchester 10.8 534,982 2.02
Birmingham 19.8 1,086,000 1.82

 

Total fatalities on UK roads

Fatalities on British roads have also been largely consistent over the last 5-years, around the 1,700 mark. Government’s 2018 report says: 30% drop compared to 2008.

Year Fatal Accidents % difference
2018 1784 -1%
2017 1793 0%
2016 1792 4%
2015 1730 -3%
2014 1775
Compared with 2014 1%

 

Total accidents on UK roads

Meanwhile, total accidents have been decreasing over the last 5-years, positive news for drivers.

Year Total road accidents % difference
2018 122,635 -6%
2017 129,982 -5%
2016 136,621 -2%
2015 140,056 -4%
2014 146,322
Compared with 2014 -16%

 

Total number of vehicles involved in accidents

The number of vehicles involved in accidents follows a similar trend, as one would expect, although well over 200,000 vehicles being involved in accidents is still a scary thought.

Year Total number of vehicles in accidents % difference
2018 226409 -5%
2017 238926 -5%
2016 252500 -2%
2015 257848 -4%
2014 268527 NA
Compared with 2014 -16%

 

Crown Oil was also able to unearth the largest accident in each year (i.e number of vehicles attributed to one accident), with a fatal 37-vehicle, 36-casualty accident on the M40 on the 14 February 2015 being the most vehicles recorded in a single accident in the last five years. 2018 saw a 24-car crash which involved a bus driving into parked cars – fortunately, despite multiple injuries, it was not fatal.

The Worst Day of the Year to be on the Roads

Crown Oil also discovered that December 1st is the worst day to be out on the road the worst day to be driving on the roads.

Date # Road Accidents 2014 -2018
01 December 2246
28 November 2238
06 October 2227
13 January 2207
30 November 2202
08 December 2200
04 December 2192
10 October 2190
20 January 2166
15 December 2162

 

In terms of the quietest days to be on the road, it’s unsurprising that the five safest days are between Christmas and New Year, with Christmas Day leading the way, as most of us are tucked away in our homes, indulging in turkey and Christmas pudding.

Date # of accidents
25 December 713
26 December 1116
31 December 1137
30 December 1189
01 January 1260
28 December 1271
27 December 1284
03 January 1328
02 January 1339
29 December 1341
24 December 1436
12 April 1454
04 January 1464
19 March 1496
17 April 1525
22 February 1560
30 May 1562
03 April 1571
10 April 1571
04 April 1572

 

The results show that in terms of total accidents over a five-year span, from 2014 – 2018 (the most recent figures available), the most car accidents occur between October and January, hardly surprising as this is when the weather turns for the worse and visibility and grip becomes reduced.

The data was also broken down by month and day of the week, and results show November takes the lead for most road accidents, with July a close second, while Fridays tend to see the most accidents:

Month # Road Accidents 2014 -2018
January 56637
February 50717
March 53426
April 51284
May 57198
June 57761
July 60009
August 55019
September 57190
October 59574
November 61491
December 55310
Day of week # Road Accidents 2014 -2018
Monday 96077
Tuesday 101285
Wednesday 102165
Thursday 102661
Friday 110179
Saturday 88249
Sunday 75000

Extrapolating this data, we can estimate that Friday, November 29, 2019 will see the most road accidents, and therefore we are calling on the public to exercise care when on the roads. Black Friday being on that will certainly not help matters with millions of Brits expected to head out to the shops in search of bargains.

Marketing executive, Crown Oil, Panayiotis Markides commented “The DfT data is eye-opening, as it’s revealed that areas in the UK like Powys are the most fatal for drivers when accounting for population. It’s also highlighted trends in road accidents, for example how we are currently in the most dangerous time of year for drivers – and it looks like it will get worse before it gets better. The holiday period seems to offer respite on the roads despite the harsher conditions, likely due to fewer cars on the road.”

“At this time of year, we encourage our own drivers to exercise caution when making deliveries around the country, and we want to encourage the public to do the same, by keeping a safe distance behind the car ahead of you, keeping to the speed limit, indicating and giving priority.”

Greater Manchester’s 20 Most Deadly Roads

We took the same data and filtered it down to the Greater Manchester area – specifically looking at fatal road accidents that Greater Manchester Police attended – a scary 251 in the five-year span we looked at, with around 50 fatal road accidents occurring in Greater Manchester every year!

We mapped out every single one of these accidents and you can notice the hotspots around Greater Manchester.

Map of Greater Manchester fatal road accidents

The analysis shows that outside A58, in terms of motorways, the M60 and M61 both claimed 6 lives over 5 years, while the M62 saw 4 fatalities, that GMP attended.

 

Road code No. of Fatal Car Accidents 2014 – 2018 Av. Annual Fatal Car Accidents
A58 11 2.2
A6 9 1.8
A56 9 1.8
A57 6 1.2
M60 6 1.2
M61 6 1.2
A62 5 1
A666 5 1
A34 5 1
A664 4 0.8
A5103 4 0.8
A576 4 0.8
A663 4 0.8
A573 4 0.8
M62 4 0.8
A572 3 0.6
B5215 3 0.6
A673 3 0.6
A627 3 0.6
A676 3 0.6

In terms of Local Authorities, the data shows Bolton has had the most fatal car crashes outside of Manchester proper with 32 incidents over the course of five years, while Bury seems the safest with just 8 crashes, although we can agree that even 8 is 8 too many.

 

Local Authority No. of Fatal Car Accidents 2014 – 2018 Av. Annual Fatal Car Accidents
Manchester 54 10.8
Bolton 32 6.4
Wigan 28 5.6
Oldham 24 4.8
Trafford 24 4.8
Rochdale 22 4.4
Salford 21 4.2
Stockport 20 4
Tameside 18 3.6
Bury 8 1.6

Marketing executive, Crown Oil, Panayiotis Markides commented: “The data is quite scary and when you map it out as we have, you come to realise that the roads millions depend on can be treacherous if drivers fail to exercise caution for others while driving. On a personal note, commuting between Bolton and Bury for me involves the A58, the M60 and the M61 – three of the top 10 roads for fatalities.

“A visual interpretation of the data also shows the hotspots for accidents in the Greater Manchester area. This data serves to highlight that drivers should really exercise caution on the road, especially at this time of the year, which data shows is the most dangerous as far as accidents go.”

Online Quote