Scotland pledges 'no road deaths by 2050'

Scottish Government's Road Safety Framework unveils interim safety targets to 2030
Enforcement / March 5, 2021
By Ben Spencer
Scotland wants to reduce cyclist deaths and serious injuries by 20% (© Toa555 |
Scotland wants to reduce cyclist deaths and serious injuries by 20% (© Toa555 |

The Scottish Government has published its Road Safety Framework to 2030, which includes an ambition to ensure there are no serious injuries or deaths on roads by 2050.

Scotland is part of the UK and covers the northern third of the island of Great Britain.

The framework's interim targets to 2030 include a 50% reduction in deaths and serious injuries. 

Other targets include a 20% reduction in cyclists killed or seriously injured and a 30% reduction in those figures for motorcyclists.

Government agency Transport Scotland says the framework is coupled with a performance management system to monitor progress - and it will establish new local partnership forums to expand the connections between national and local road safety.

Cabinet secretary for transport, infrastructure and connectivity Michael Matheson published the framework document while also announcing a £500,000 allocation to open the latest round of Road Safety Framework Funding – helping organisations take forward projects to improve road safety.

The fund is designed to promote and encourage further partnership working to help ensure the delivery of the framework. 

The launch of the framework coincides with a new national marketing campaign by the Scottish Government and Road Safety Scotland focused on speed reduction.

Transport Scotland developed the policy framework following a public consultation and ongoing consultations with the Strategic Partnership Board (SPB) and the Operational Partnership Group (OPG).

The SPB works in partnership with ministers and senior partner organisations to ensure a strategic buy-in to the framework. Its members include NHS Scotland and the Society of Local Authority Chief Executives.

The OPG consists of organisations with an interest in road safety, such as Police Scotland, I Am Roadsmart and Cycling Scotland. 

Safety campaign group I Am RoadSmart is also using the Scottish announcement to urge the Department for Transport (DoT) to reinstate targets in England.

Neil Greig, the group's director of policy & research, says: “For every nation, the setting of road safety targets has been a catalyst for improvement in road deaths and injury numbers.

“Road safety organisations across the UK agree that targets work but the Department for Transport in London no longer use them. So today we have to ask the question, if Scotland can set road safety targets, why can’t England?”

Greig also insists it is vital that investment in road safety does not become a victim of any “post pandemic spending cuts”. 

“Given the broad nature of the impact road safety has this should include protected funding for Police Scotland to deliver enforcement, Road Safety Scotland to deliver education campaigns, and for Transport Scotland and local councils to deliver engineering solutions and maintain our existing roads properly,” he adds. 

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