Shocking statistics have revealed that Merseyside is the most dangerous place in the country for pedestrians.
The data comes from a Department for Transport report, which shows that the top two most dangerous areas are Merseyside and the West Midlands.
In Merseyside, there are 14 pedestrian killed or seriously injured per 100,000 people. Although there is a distinct correlation with pedestrian safety and particular areas in the UK, it is unclear as to the reason why there is such a variation in the figures for 2011.
London has the largest number of vehicles on the road in the entire country, but is still deemed 10 per cent safer than Merseyside for pedestrians.
A spokesman for motoring organisation, The AA, told JMU Journalism: “Built-up areas are always going to have more accidents. It primarily comes down to the neighbourhood, pedestrian accidents tend to happen a lot areas with poverty, as there is less access to cars, therefore more people walking.”
Figures show which areas are more dangerous, however the same report shows that pedestrian fatalities have increased by 12 per cent overall throughout the UK, most notably among the elderly and young children.
Walk and Cycle Merseyside is a group that encourages cycling on the road as an alternative to driving, and it campaigns for pedestrian safety. They claim on their website that the answer to the problem would be better-enforced speed limits, and a reduction to 20mph in built-up areas.
The group also urges Liverpool City Council to follow other local authorities in taking measures to make the roads safer for pedestrians. In Bath, a ‘snow warden’ scheme has been introduced to ensure clear pavements in icy weather, with a similar policy in place in Bedfordshire and Surrey.
The AA spokesman added: “We don’t agree with 20mph speed limits on bus route roads, as it slows down services and creates more traffic. The council need to identify where the accidents are happening and how to cut them and reducing risks.”
Dave Foulkes, manager of the Merseyside Road Safety Partnership, also added: “We are aware of the pedestrian issue in Merseyside and as such this is one of our priority areas moving forward.”
Additional reporting by Lauren Murphy