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New statistics show lowest number of people killed on London’s roads outside of pandemic years

TfL has published the 2023 road casualty data to its online dashboard, showing the number of people killed on London's roads in 2023 fell by six per cent from 102 to 95, the second lowest level on record

Despite this significant progress, TfL and the Mayor remain committed to doing more, with continued action needed to achieve the Mayor's Vision Zero goal of eliminating death and serious injury from the transport network   

Vulnerable road users continue to be most at risk, with people walking, cycling and motorcycling making up 80 per cent of all people killed or seriously injured in 2023  

Transport for London (TfL) has published annual casualty statistics that show the number of people tragically killed or seriously injured on London's roads in 2023 fell by 6 per cent to the second lowest level on record, from 3,974 to 3,709. Last year was the lowest year on record for fatalities, excluding 2021, which was heavily affected by pandemic-related lockdowns and changes in travel patterns. This marks important progress towards the Mayor's Vision Zero goal of eliminating death and serious injury from London's streets by 2041. The number of people killed and seriously injured on London's roads has also reduced overall by 24 per cent against the 2010-2014 baseline.

However, 95 people were tragically killed on London's roads, with devastating consequences for the families, friends and communities impacted by these deaths and life-changing injuries. Collective action is still needed and TfL remains committed to working closely with London's boroughs, the police and other partners to carry out the work needed to achieve this goal.

People walking, cycling and motorcycling continue to be most at risk, making up 80 per cent of all people killed or seriously injured in 2023. The number of people killed while cycling has fallen by 40 per cent against the 2010-14 baseline, from 13 to eight. Data shows that cycling journeys have continued to increase with the number of daily cycle journeys increasing to 1.26 million in 2023, up by 6.3 per cent since 2022 [1], suggesting that cycling trips have become safer overall. Concerns around safety remain one of the biggest barriers to cycling. To continue to reduce risk and increase the number of people who choose to cycle, there is a need to continue to introduce safe, segregated cycling infrastructure, lower speeds and road safety initiatives.

In 2023, there were 252 people seriously injured in collisions involving a TfL Bus, including passengers, and six people killed, which represents a 43 per cent reduction in bus involved fatalities from the 2010-2014 baseline [2]. While this progress is good, more is required and TfL is committed to improving bus safety. TfL continues to deliver its Bus Safety Programme, with all new buses joining the London bus fleet currently compliant with either the 2019 or 2021 Bus Safety Standard. As part of this, TfL has fitted 3,795 buses with Intelligent Speed Assistance, which ensures buses comply with the speed limit. TfL has also fitted 1,251 buses with an acoustic vehicle alerting system (AVAS), which alerts other road users to the presence of quieter electric buses and 1,297 buses have been fitted with a camera monitoring system that replaces wing mirrors to reduce blind spots and improve the driver's field of vision.

Cars continued to be the main vehicle type involved in collisions in 2023 and are involved in 68 per cent of all casualties on London's roads. Speeding remains one of the biggest risks to road users, with around half of the 2023 fatal collisions in London reporting speed as a contributory factor. TfL continues to work on lowering speeds across London, and last year lowered the speed limit on selected roads in 14 boroughs, exceeding its target to lower the speed limit on 140km of roads by March 2024. There are now 264km of TfL roads are now subject to a 20mph speed limit. TfL is also working closely with the police to increase their capacity to take enforcement action against drivers and riders who speed, given the risk and harm it causes. The Met is currently on target to be able to take action on a million speeding offences by the end of 24/25. In 2023/24, more than 800,000 speeding offences were enforced.

TfL is working in partnership with the boroughs, police and other stakeholders to directly tackle road danger and continues to work on a number of major programmes to make London's roads and the vehicles using them safer. TfL's world-first Direct Vision Standard, which reduces lethal blind spots on lorries, is already helping to save lives and prevent life-changing injuries. From October 2024, TfL will be enhancing DVS requirements with all HGVs over 12 tonnes required to have a three-star rating or fit Progressive Safe System measures to operate in Greater London. TfL has also continued to work on its Safer Junctions programme to make life-saving changes at some of the capital's most dangerous and intimidating junctions. TfL has so far completed work at 45 junctions across London as part of the programme, with works at Battersea Bridge and Lambeth Bridge due to start later this year.

Walking and Cycling Commissioner, Will Norman said: "Every death or serious injury on our streets is devastating. We're making significant progress but we know there is more work to do to eliminate deaths and serious injuries from London's roads.

"The Mayor is committed to making it safer and easier for people to walk and cycle around our city, which is why we are expanding our safer speed programme, tightening the Direct Vision Safety standard for HGVs and working with the boroughs to deliver high-quality cycle routes as we work to build a greener, safer London for everyone." 

Lilli Matson, TfL's Chief Safety, Health and Environment Officer said: "It's encouraging to see that real progress is being made towards our Vision Zero goal of eliminating death and serious injury from the transport network. Last year saw the lowest number of road deaths in London on record, with the exception of 2021, which was heavily impacted by Covid restrictions.

"However, the latest casualty stats show that it is more important than ever to double down on our Vision Zero goal. Protecting everyone on the road, particularly people walking, cycling and motorcycling, is a priority for us and our partners and we will continue to incorporate our Vision Zero strategy into every decision we make. Without safe streets we know that people won't choose the most healthy and sustainable modes of transport. We are determined to make London a greener, more sustainable and safer city, and Vision Zero is an essential part of building a better London for everyone."

Nick Simmons, CEO of RoadPeace said: "It is encouraging to learn that there was a slight decrease in road deaths and serious injuries in London in 2023, but we are still deeply saddened by the tragic and unacceptable loss of life and the extreme suffering caused by collisions in the capital. The ripple effect of road crashes goes far beyond the statistics; it devastates families and shatters communities.

"So much more needs to be done to achieve Vision Zero, and road users must all take responsibility, no matter how they use London's roads. We need collective action and commitment from everyone - drivers, cyclists, pedestrians and policymakers - to see a significant reduction in road deaths and serious injuries and to create safer streets for all."

TfL continues to work closely with boroughs across the capital to invest in the walking and cycling infrastructure needed to enable increases in active travel and keep people walking and cycling safe, and there has been significant progress in expanding London's network of high-quality Cycleways in recent years. London now has more than 360km of strategic cycle routes across London, and during this financial year, TfL will continue to work with London's boroughs to deliver more Cycleways expanding the network to new areas. With £19.5m of investment already announced, this funding will complete Cycleways between Lea Bridge and Dalston, between Deptford and Deptford Creek and Hammersmith and Kensington Olympia. This funding will also progress design and delivery of Cycleways across Bexley, Harrow, Hounslow, Bromley and Redbridge.

Last year, TfL launched its Vision Zero Inequalities Dashboard tool, creating a new map of London that shows the stark levels of road traffic injury inequality in the capital. The pioneering new tool is the first of its kind in Europe and shows how deprivation is linked to higher road casualty levels, reinforcing the need to target investment and improvements to protect those most vulnerable.

TfL will use the data from this dashboard to inform its own investment priorities and provide this data to boroughs to develop their Local Implementation Plans (LIPs). TfL has met and shared the findings of this dashboard with the boroughs with the top five highest casualty rates and top five highest casualty location rates.  TfL will continue to work with boroughs and stakeholders to analyse the cause of inequalities in road injury, help target future road danger reduction programme planning and investment for infrastructure schemes and drive further action to reduce road danger inequalities and make London's streets safer. The Mayor of London is committed to creating a fairer, more equal and integrated city as set out in the Healthy Streets approach within The Mayor's Transport Strategy. 

The Mayor of London's 2018 Action Plan for road safety and 2022 Progress Report set out measurable objectives that TfL, the boroughs, the Met and other partner organisations have been working to deliver. The time-bound actions in these plans have a deadline of the end of 2024 for completion, and the Mayor will ensure that these organisations continue to work together to achieve new, measurable actions by 2030.

Notes to editors

  • All 2023 road casualty data can be found on TfL's road danger reduction dashboard here: https://tfl.gov.uk/corporate/publications-and-reports/road-safety
  • TfL is making improvements to the road safety data that it publishes based on feedback from its user engagement survey. As part of the changes TfL will not be publishing a provisional report on the 2023 casualty data in May, the report will be published in September once the annual data is finalised. All of the data that TfL normally provides in the provisional report will still be available, and can be accessed via the road danger reduction dashboard here: https://tfl.gov.uk/corporate/publications-and-reports/road-safety 
  • [1] Travel in London p. 21 figure 12
  • [2] This is based on stats 19 data which excludes all non-highway incidents, including fatalities that have taken place in bus stations
  • Last year, TfL, in collaboration with the Mayor's Office for Policing and Crime (MOPAC), police and charities Brake and RoadPeace, launched a new pilot victim support service to significantly improve support for victims of the most serious road traffic collisions in London. The service is staffed by dedicated, trained caseworkers, co-ordinators and volunteers
  • The Sarah Hope Line continues to be a vital resource for people affected by serious incidents on TfL services. The service is run by dedicated TfL staff to provide practical, financial and emotional help and can also make referrals for counselling and specialised support. Tel: 0343 222 5678, Monday-Friday 08:00-18:00
  • Further information on Vision Zero is available in the Vision Zero Progress Report here: https://content.tfl.gov.uk/vision-zero-action-plan-progress-report-2021.pdf and the Vision Zero Action Plan here: https://content.tfl.gov.uk/vision-zero-action-plan.pdf 
  • TfL's Vision Zero enforcement dashboard can be found here: https://app.powerbi.com 
  • For data on cycling increases from the Department for Transport National Road Traffic Survey please see here: https://www.gov.uk/government/statistical-data-sets/road-traffic-statistics-tra#pedal-cycle-traffic-tra04
  • TfL's Vision Zero Inequalities Dashboard is available on the TfL website here 
  • The Inequalities in Road Safety in London (2017-2021) report can be found here 
  • RoadPeace is the national charity for road crash victims in the UK
Channel website: https://tfl.gov.uk/

Original article link: https://tfl.gov.uk/info-for/media/press-releases/2024/may/new-statistics-show-lowest-number-of-people-killed-on-london-s-roads-outside-of-pandemic-years

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