Although we have some of the safest roads in the world, every death or serious injury is one too many, Economy Sectary Ken Skates has said today.
The Cabinet Secretary opened a high level Road Safety in Wales event in Cardiff today, bringing together key decision makers in the emergency services and local authorities. The event looked ahead to how new and emerging technologies will impact on safety on Welsh roads and how behaviour change models can be applied to reduce casualties, in particular among the most high risk groups of motorcyclists and young people.
Economy and Infrastructure Secretary Ken Skates said:
“The next decade will likely see record Welsh Government investment in our roads – alongside much needed improvements to our cycleways, footpaths, railways and airports.
“In investing in a network fit for modern Wales, we’ve been very clear that safety has to remain paramount, a principle which is reflected in our ambitious target to reduce those killed or seriously injured by 40% by 2020.
“Working in partnership with local authorities, the UK Government, emergency services and road safety organisations we have made excellent progress towards this target, with our roads now amongst the safest in the world. Every death on our roads is one too many, however, and I am very clear that we must continue to look at how we can improve things further.
“It’s for this reason that we’ve continued to invest millions of pounds through the Road Safety Revenue grant, the Roads Safety Capital Grant and supporting safety cameras through Go Safe, amongst others. It’s disappointing, and a source of much frustration, therefore that one potential game changer for road safety improvements, graduated driver licencing, is still not being considered by UK Government.
“It’s my belief that this is the single biggest measure we could now see to significantly improve road safety on our roads and I’d again call on the UK Government to reassess their position and act to help ensure inexperienced drivers, and those who share the road with them, are as well protected as possible.”
The Road Safety in Wales event brings decision makers across Wales together to review and update the Welsh Government’s road safety framework. This framework informs how partners in Wales work together to ensure Welsh roads are as safe as possible, setting out targets and the actions being taken to achieve them.