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Working together to make Devon and Cornwall’s roads safer

Road safety experts from around the country will come together today (Tuesday, June 4) to discuss ways of reducing the number of people killed and seriously injured on Devon and Cornwall’s roads.

The Peninsula Road Safety Meeting at St Mellion has been organised by the Peninsula Road Safety Partnership and the Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner for Devon and Cornwall and the Director of Public Health for Devon, Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly.

The latest figures show that 58 people were killed in the Devon and Cornwall Police force area in the 12 months to March 2019 and there were 837 serious casualties.

Devon and Cornwall Police and Crime Commissioner Alison Hernandez is the national lead for roads policing for the Association of Police and Crime Commissioners.

Last year she commissioned a new Road Safety Strategy which embraced a “spirit of shared responsibility” between organisations and recommended a deeper “partnership problem-solving approach”.

Today’s meeting will hear from Kevin Brown, of the Safer Essex Roads Partnership, which deployed a number of innovative approaches to enforcement that have gone hand in hand with a noticeable reduction in the number of people killed and seriously injured on Essex’s roads. Partners in Essex have signed up to a “Vision Zero” strategy in recognition that a single road death is one too many.

Delegates will also hear from David Davies, Executive Director of the Parliamentary Advisory Council for Transport Safety who, along with other specialists, advocated an evidence led approach to road safety that delivered safe roads, safe vehicles, safe people and safe speeds – to be achieved by combining the activities of a broad range of stakeholders.

Alison said: “Week after week we are reminded of the tragic consequences of dangerous driving and the vulnerability of certain road users.

“There is some fantastic work being done across the region to make our roads safer but we can always do more. I would always advocate closer partnership working – it’s at the heart of my police and crime plan – and I am sure that by working even more closely together to educate and enforce against dangerous driving that more needless deaths and injuries can be avoided.

“I am delighted that so many organisations have demonstrated a commitment to achieving a vision of a safer Devon and Cornwall by attending this event.”

Torbay Council’s Cabinet Member of Infrastructure, Environment and Culture, Councillor Mike Morey said: “We’re looking forward to building on our work with the existing partnership and widening the scope of initiatives to keep our roads as safe as possible.”   

Professor Virginia Pearson, Director of Public Health Devon, Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly said: “The road toll is a significant public health issue on the peninsula and we need to tackle the twin challenges of increasing populations of our most vulnerable road users and economic growth, both of which we know are linked to collision risk. 

“There is a strong tradition of partnership working on road safety issues in the south west and we look forward to expanding the number of partners, and the breadth of their work, after this summit.  By combining the skills, experience and resources of public health, front line clinical care, highway authorities, police, fire & rescue, the ambulance service and other stakeholders I am confident we can make sustained improvements in collision and casualty reduction on our roads.”


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