'It's absolutely devastating' - Road deaths and injuries rise to six-year high in Merseyside

Merseyside Police are keen to raise awareness around the 'fatal four' driving offences - the primary contributors to people being killed on roads.
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There has been an increase in the number of people being killed or seriously injured on our roads here in Merseyside. Data from a Freedom of Information request has shown that in 2023, there were 550 cases, 91 more than the previous year. That's an increase of almost 20%. The levels of deaths and serious injuries are also the highest in six years.

Aftermath Support helps those affected by traffic collisions on the roads and around the northwest of England. The charity's Chief Executive Karen Blair said: "It's absolutely devastating. As an organisation that supports people after a road crash, we're fully behind the road safety strategy and vision zero in our area, which aims to reduce those affected by serious road collisions. So, to have it increase is not great."

Merseyside Police are keen to raise awareness around four driving related offences which are putting people's lives at risk: drink and drug driving, using a mobile phone behind the wheel, excess speeding and failing to use seatbelts. These 'fatal four' driving offences represent the primary contributors to people being killed or seriously injured on UK roads.

Karen said: "The ripple effect within communities can be massive. Whilst there is people directly involved, we estimate at least four other people around about collision that are also affected. When you think about witnesses, family members, colleges, schools and workplaces, the number affected is much larger."

  • Annual figures for 2023 revealed officers arrested a total of 2,730 drug drivers - an average of 227 per month and 53 per week.
  • During the festive period between November 20 and January 1, officers detained 191 drink drivers and 469 drug drivers - a 23% increase from 2022, where a total of 537 drink and drug drivers were arrested.

Merseyside Police want to place emphasis on the facts around illegal drug driving but also raise awareness about prescription drugs if they render the person unfit to be behind the wheel. Those convicted of drug driving face up to six months in prison, an unlimited fine and a potential one-year driving ban.

  • Watch the video above for our full feature on Merseyside's roads and to hear more from Aftermath Support chief executive Karen Blair.