Drivers Face Greatest Risk At Lower Speeds, According To New Figures

Drivers in Britain face the greatest risk of accidents and collisions whilst travelling at lower speeds. That’s according to new figures released by a road charity…

Danger At Lower Speeds

It may sound contradictory, but drivers are most at risk of experiencing an accident when travelling at lower speeds. That’s according to new figures produced by the road safety charity Brake. Back in 2019, a whopping 52% of all road accidents involved vehicles travelling between 21 and 30 mph. For perspective, the second-highest category involved speeds between 51 and 60 mph. These represented 20% of all crashes and accidents. Overall, 68% of all accidents in 2019 involved speeds below 41 mph.

Making sense of the figures isn’t challenges when you consider which sort of roads use which speed limits. Motorways and A-roads, whilst using high speed limits, involve free-flowing traffic that moves in the same direction. Which is why they’re actually the safest roads in the country. Roads with lower speed limits, in urban areas, have much denser traffic and far more obstacles and manoeuvres with which to contend.

Carole Nash insurance analysed Department for Transport data for Brake. Marc Copper, head of product at Carole Nash, said “we all know to be extra cautious if we’re travelling at speed, but perhaps we’re forgetting how dangerous low speeds can be too”. He added, “road users need to be aware of everything going on around them at all times, and it’s important to be as vigilant on a 30mph limit road as you would be on a motorway”.

Motorcyclists Most Affected

The figures have also provided some insight into risks faced by different road-users. When looking at the casualty rate per billion passenger miles, non-car driving road-users are the significantly more vulnerable. Motorcyclists are the worst affected (5,051 casualties per billion passenger miles). They’re followed by cyclists (4,891), pedestrians (1,640) and passengers in cars (195). However, the order changes somewhat when it comes to the death rate. When this is taken into account, motorcyclists remain at the highest risk (104.6 deaths per billion passenger miles; however, pedestrians (35.4) are at more risk than cyclists (29).

So, if you’re a motorcyclist who often travels on roads with low speeds, you have every reason to be extra cautious and vigilant.

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