Dozens of people killed and over 500 seriously injured on region’s roads last year

Photo: Victoria Jones/PA Wire
Photo: Victoria Jones/PA Wire

Provisional data from the Department for Transport showed 38 people were killed and 522 people were seriously injured in the area across 2021.

The figure was up from 37 from the year before – a year impacted by harsh coronavirus restrictions – whilst serious injuries increased from 399.

Meanwhile the overall number of “road casualties”, including a widespread range of injuries, in the region hit 3,691 compared to 2,900 within 2020.

It comes as a series of charities said the Government must do more to tackle an up-tick in injuries from traffic accidents amid an increase nationally.

Mark Turner, chief executive of the Road Victims Trust, said: “It remains a terrible fact that four people will be killed on the roads of the UK each day, with many more suffering life-changing injuries.

“The devastation and trauma caused by these collisions is immense and it is disturbing to see a climb in the numbers of people affected.”

Scott Williams, head of programme delivery at Brake, said every child should have the right to walk in their neighbourhood without fear of traffic or pollution.

Nicolas Lyes, the RAC’s head of roads policy, said: “RAC research suggests there is a huge level of concern among drivers about the standard of driving on our roads, so we urge the Government to consider reintroducing road safety targets.

“They should also look at whether the long-term decline in full-time road traffic police officers has led to a worsening in driver behaviour.”

Overall, across Great Britain there were 127,967 road casualties in 2021 – an 11 per cent rise on the year before – while 1,560 people were killed.

A Department for Transport spokesperson said: “While there has been a decline in road casualties in recent years, any fatality on our roads is a tragedy and our sympathies remain with anyone who has lost a loved one.

“Road safety is a top priority we are committed to improving through education and updates to the Highway Code that will help protect vulnerable road users, alongside our highly successful THINK! Campaign.”

In Wolverhampton, three people were killed and 88 people were seriously injured last year – with three deaths and 60 serious injuries recorded in 2020.

In Sandwell the figure was two and 99, with five deaths and 92 serious injuries recorded the year before. In Walsall, this was five and 94 with six and 69 recorded the year before.

Meanwhile 24 people were killed in Staffordshire and 175 people were seriously injured, up from 11 and 105 in 2020. And in Dudley, four people were killed and 66 people were seriously injured – with 12 deaths and 73 people were badly hurt the year before.

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