I love statistics, and I know personal injury. I can marry the two to provide a brief overview of how common injuries arising from road traffic accidents really are. Gov.uk has provided national statistics for the year ending Sept 2015. The results may surprise even the more pessimistic of us. The graphs and analysis of the data pulled together by the government statistics office is rather compelling reading for geeks like me.

Despite the number of fatalities reducing from the previous year, there were still 23,700 RTA victims killed or seriously injured (abbreviated to KSI’s) in the UK. I deal with injury claims every day and even to me that seems very high. I don’t have the numbers for Scotland alone but it is likely to be a significant number relative to the population of our small country.

188,830 people in total suffered some level of injury during the same period due to an accident on the road. The figure may not be entirely accurate as not every level of injury will have been reported. These figures are collected by the Collision Recording and Sharing System, cleverly been named CRASH. It is related to accidents reported to the police. As I know very well, not every road accident is reported to the police even where there is an injury. In any event, this number is also down from the previous year despite traffic levels increasing. So we must be doing something right, but can we still do more?

  • Keep a safe braking distance. We all know this golden rule, but we have also all had that annoying driver travelling so close behind you that you can almost smell their aftershave.
  • Check twice for motorcycles. Outwith motor vehicles, motor cycles are the next most common victim of RTA casualties with 5,350 reported KSI’s for the year ending Sept 2015.
  • Know and keep the speed limit. Speeding seems commonplace but the stats show that speed plays a part in the severity of injury, so keep the speed within the limit.

While the report shows an overall decline in casualties since the start of data collection in 2007, our roads are still dangerous places. The commentary to the stats notes that the data does not prove that our roads are safer places even if the figures are encouraging. Improving safety is always a work in progress. Looking at ways for us all to actively engage in not becoming a statistic will be a good start to reducing the current personal injury statistics.