A FAIR DEAL FOR THE MOTORIST
LBHF CONSULTATION ON BOROUGH-WIDE 20MPH1
NOT JUSTIFIED BY RECENT ACCIDENT REPORTS
CONSULTATION NOW CLOSED, BUT YOU CAN STILL
SAY ‘NO’… for how and main info page, click here …
MOST ACCIDENTS AREN’T CAUSED BY (EXCESS) SPEED
Looking through LB Hammersmith & Fulham casualty reports (2012-14), very few seem related to excess speed. The Police reports on the factors causing road accidents aren’t an exact science, but they are the best information available. So please treat the following figures as ballpark.
A sample of 12 months' out of 36 months' road accident reports was checked; including 4 months from each calendar year (2012/3/4) and each calendar month.
About 1% seemed to have speed as a factor. One was overtaking on a right turn, which does not imply great speed. Another, ditto, was ‘reversing at speed’ and others involved wet road conditions and travelling on a bend.
After considering mitigating factors, it implies that about 0.5% are truly speed-related. LBHF would do better to round up all the drunks, as so far intoxication (over 1% of sample) has been seen to be a greater accident factor.
CHILDREN’S ACCIDENTS – GUESS THE MAIN CAUSE…
The Council's one-sided consultation booklet has to say: "Three children a month are injured by car in Hammersmith & Fulham". It goes on to say that almost half of people injured by a car last year were cyclists or pedestrians.
The recent statistics don't quite support the first claim. The total child casualties were 88 (an average of just 2.4/month) in 83 road accidents.
And not all were due in any way to cars. Some collisions involve buses, taxis, cycles...
All 83 police reports were objectively checked to try to identify likely responsibility for the collision:
· All due to pedestrians/cyclists 54%.
· All due to bus/coach 10% (all but one were passengers falling within a bus or getting stuck in the doors!).
· All due to other vehicles (car, taxi, lorry, motorcycle) 29% (These included 13% vehicle to vehicle collisions where one or more children was a passenger; the other 16% due to car driver or passenger, which might include unguardedly opening a door, or being clipped by a wing mirror!).
· No clear responsibility apportionable 7%.
So - under 16% due to cars or parts of cars colliding with a child. 13 accidents in 3 years is more typically 0.36 children per month when responsibility is taken into account.
In only 1 of the accidents was speed even 'possibly' a factor; many were in the rush hour or otherwise slowed down conditions (turning at a junction, reversing).
This does not provide justification for spending towards £1 million of council taxpayers’ money on borough-wide 20mph limits, possibly ‘self-enforced’ via speed humps.
LBHF should scrap its flawed consultation and switch its focus onto more relevant safety measures like road user education. A few school posters reminding young pedestrians and cyclists to take due care might achieve more for road safety and casualty reduction. And maybe more Police patrols to deter the irresponsible minority of drivers?
FATALITIES AND SERIOUS ACCIDENTS – GUESS THE MAIN CAUSE…
Serious accidents with child casualties (8 out of 83) and wider fatalities (8 out of about 1800 casualties) in the 3 year period were reviewed. As the population of either sub-set of casualties is not high, the observations are ‘for illustration’.
Of the 8 accidents with 'serious' child casualties:
· 3 were due to pedestrian error
· 2 were due to motor vehicles like a car
· 1 was due to a cyclist
· 2 were unclear as to responsibility.
Of the 8 fatal accidents (none with child casualties):
· 1 casualty was a motorcyclist when a car pulled out to turn right; 7 were pedestrians, of whom 4 were OAPs.
· 4 pedestrian casualties involved being hit by a large vehicle like a goods vehicle, bus or coach. Another involved a drunk pedestrian falling down in the road at night.
· 1 OAP pedestrian was hit by a car on a (non-zebra) crossing in the rush hour. Police notes did not identify responsibility.
· All 6 other pedestrian casualties involved the victim error in stepping out.
· 3 of the fatalities occurred during the rush hour, and in none of the 8 was there any evidence as to travelling at speed.
DON’T LET THE TRUTH BE A CASUALTY.
SAY ‘NO’ TO LBHF AND DEMAND BETTER ALTERNATIVES….
For how click here … and scroll down.
In a press release dated 25 June 2015, the Institute of Advanced Motorists, noted “the numbers of people killed on roads with a 20mph limit increased by 367%” [between 2013 and 2014....]. There are no doubt a number of factors behind this, but it again shows why 20mph limits should not be taken as some sort of ‘silver bullet’.
FOR MORE INFORMATION...
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1. On borough-run roads; excludes TFL-run A4, A40 and A3220.