Road safety strategy

MQT on 2012-03-14
Session date: 
March 14, 2012
Question By: 
Jenny Jones
City Hall Greens
Asked Of: 
The Mayor


Since 2009 you have told me six times that your draft Road Safety Strategy was forthcoming. In January this year you told me that "TfL will shortly be going out to external consultation". Why have you failed to treat this important subject as a priority, by getting a plan published, consulted upon and agreed?


Answer for Road safety strategy

Answer for Road safety strategy

Answered By: 
The Mayor

(Written answer provided on 13 April 2012.)

The safety of Londoners is an absolute priority for me. As you know, TfL's existing Road Safety Plan is in place and there is a wide ranging programme of initiatives to deliver this. This includes:

Changing the physical environment by using highway engineering to deliver safer streets and public spaces; for example: - Introduction of the Pedestrian Countdown system to help pedestrians feel safer by removing any uncertainty they may have when crossing at traffic signals with a pedestrian facility. - Engineering schemes to create more shared space, such as the Exhibition Road project, by removing the dominance of a single mode of transport and providing spaces that all users can enjoy. - In addition, each year TfL identifies the locations where collisions occur on the road network. Where an ongoing road safety problem is identified, this will be the subject of a road safety study (if it is on the TLRN) and liaison with the relevant boroughs.

Education, training & awareness using public awareness campaigns and a wide range of communication methods to change user behaviour; for example: - A teen road safety campaign, launched March 2012, designed to warn teens of the dangers they face from traffic every day on the Capital's roads. - A Junior Road Safety Officer scheme to give pupils a dynamic role in road safety to get serious messages across in a fun way. - Road safety curriculum resources in schools, including engagement with nurseries and early-years providers to deliver road safety training. - Training courses for both cyclists and powered two wheeler riders , to raise riders' awareness of risks and reduce the likelihood of being involved in a collision. - TfL and Crossrail are also undertaking a huge programme of commercial driver training to educate drivers of heavy goods vehicles and other vehicles in how to keep pedestrians and cyclists safe on the roads.

Enforcement action by the police and other agencies to help ensure road users behave safely, for example: - The TfL funded Met Police Commercial Vehicle Task Force, whose aim is to improve road safety in London through enforcement and educating lorry, van and other commercial vehicle operators across London. - The TfL funded Met Police Cycle Task Force has ten traffic officers to focus on road user behaviour and breaches of traffic regulations. - TfL funded safety cameras, consisting of cameras installed at sites with a history of killed or seriously injured casualties caused by excessive speed or running red lights.

London boroughs also set their priorities and plans for road safety in their Local Implementation Plans. Over £147m has been allocated for transport schemes across London's boroughs for the financial year 2012/13. The money is being distributed to support schemes to make roads safer, improve facilities for cycling and walking and rejuvenate local town centres.

Over the last 4 years, TfL and the boroughs have delivered ambitious and successful road safety initiatives. Since 2008, there has been an 18 per cent reduction in the number of people killed or injured on London's roads and London has met and surpassed the national road safety targets years ahead of schedule. Despite this achievement, the future challenges are significant - London's population and corresponding demands on the road network will continue to grow and many of the quick wins have been achieved.

I am keen to build on this success and have decided that we need an approach to road safety and the wider management of London's road network that is commensurate with the challenges we face.

As a first step, I have asked TfL to review hundreds of key junctions across the capital to examine safety and provision for cyclists and other road users. I believe that there is a unique opportunity to develop, in tandem with this work, a road safety plan for the next generation of London's roads, an ambitious plan that recognises that we need to move on from making incremental changes to roads in London that were in many cases designed for the primary purpose of moving cars, vans and lorries, to designing solutions for roads also built for people. I also believe that we need to make the case for investing much more into the entire network, to improve both the way that our roads function in terms of getting people and goods from A to B safely and efficiently, but also to ensure that they are places that enrich the fabric of our city.

With this in mind, developing a new road safety plan for London needs to be properly informed by the emerging outcomes from the junction review as well as developments in other areas such as traffic management and vehicle technology. My officers have developed a draft and have had extensive discussions with key stakeholder groups. These discussions produced a range of new ideas and approaches that I felt needed to be reflected in the draft to make it sufficiently ambitious. Clearly, all the programmes listed above will be continuing in the meantime.