Road accident fatalities on the rise – but casualty figures fallen

Cars on motorway

Final statistics from Transport Scotland confirm that 191 people were killed in reported road accidents in Scotland in 2016 – which is a 14% rise from 2015 figures.

However, the overall number of casualties from road traffic accidents has fallen by 1% across all areas including car, pedestrian, motorcycle and cycling.

In 2016, the total number of casualties reported was 10,901 whereas the previous year this number was as high as 10,973.

Fatal accidents on Scottish roads

Overall, there were 3 more cycling and motorcycle fatalities in 2016 compared to 2015 and 31 more car fatalities. However, there were 12 less pedestrian fatalities.

In fatal accidents, the most common contributory factor was loss of control which accounted for 40% of fatal road traffic accidents. 24% reported failure to look properly, 16% poor turn or manoeuvre and 20% reported travelling too fast for road conditions.

Increase in child casualties

Sadly, the figures also show that in 2016 there was a 4% increase in child road accident casualties.

There were 1,000 child casualties reported in 2016 which included 12 fatalities, up from 4 fatalities in 2015. Of those seriously injured, it rose from 139 to 167 children in 2016.

More people seriously injured in road accidents

As well as the increase in fatalities between 2015 and 2016, the number of people seriously injured also rose by 6% from 1,596 to 1,697.

The number of people seriously injured in car accidents in 2016 rose by a staggering 19% with numbers of motorcyclists seriously injured rising by 4%.

Less pedestrian and cyclists seriously injured on the roads

2016 saw a drop in the number of pedestrians and cyclists seriously injured on the roads. The number of pedestrians seriously injured fell by 7% and 10% less cyclists were seriously injured in Scotland.

Importance of road safety

At Digby Brown, we support a number of road safety initiatives including the recent Edinburgh Young Drivers event which took place earlier this month, highlighting the importance of road safety to sixth year pupils in Edinburgh.

We encourage everyone to:

  • Stick to the speed limit
  • Reduce speed to suit road conditions such as ice and snow
  • Regularly check your tyres, lights and wipers are in good working order
  • Stay focused on the road and lock mobile phones away
  • Don’t drink and drive

We see first hand the devastating effects of serious and fatal accidents on the road. Hopefully next year we will see the number of fatal and serious road accidents in Scotland fall as even one death on the road is one too many.