Data shows fall in road deaths in 2023

Published on behalf of Road Safety GB

New official statistics estimate there were 1,645 road fatalities in 2023, a decline of 4% compared to 2022.

The provisional data, published by the DfT on 30 May, also shows there were 132,063 casualties of all severities, a year-on-year decline of 3%.

There were 29,643 killed or seriously injured (KSI) casualties, little change compared to 2022.

In terms of different road user types, there were reductions in fatalities among car occupants, motorcyclists and cyclists.

At 12%, the biggest percentage change compared to 2022 was for motorcyclists. Car occupant fatalities fell by 5%, and cyclists 7%.

There was however a rise in the number of pedestrian fatalities – up by 6%.

The RAC has highlighted concern over this rise, particularly given the context of changes to the Highway Code, designed to improve safety for pedestrians, which came into effect two years ago.

Simon Williams, RAC head of policy, said: “While there has been a slight decline in the year-on-year number of road users killed in crashes, the larger proportion of pedestrian fatalities should be a red flag to the Government signifying just how dangerous our roads still are.

“It’s extremely concerning that these figures have risen in the two years since the Highway Code was changed with a view to making the roads safer for the most vulnerable users. 

“We hope there isn’t a negative link between the two, but with RAC research showing a third of drivers think pedestrians now face greater danger at junctions due to the changes, there seem to be questions that need answering.”

Other analysis of the provisional 2023 data shows:

  • 75% of fatalities and 61% of casualties of all severities were male
  • 4% of fatalities and 10% of casualties were aged 16 years old and under
  • 24% of fatalities and 29% of casualties were aged 17 to 29 years old
  • 23% of fatalities and 8% of casualties were aged 70 years old and over

The provisional estimates are based on data supplied by police forces by May 2024. A small amount of missing data has been estimated. Figures will change following updates from the police and the end of year validation process.

This is likely to be published in September 2024.


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