Rise in speeding crashes prompts calls for ‘limiters’ in cars

Campaigners have called for ‘speed-capping’ technology to be installed in all new vehicles after a rise in the number of collisions where drivers broke the limit.

Nov 20, 2017

Campaigners have called for ‘speed-capping’ technology to be installed in all new vehicles after a rise in the number of collisions where drivers broke the limit. Excess speed contributed to 291 crashes in Scotland last year, up 26 per cent on 2013. Travelling too fast for conditions also led to 510 collisions, and almost 10,000 people were killed or injured on the roads. Road safety groups believe ‘Intelligent Speed Adaptation’ (ISA) technology would reduce the number of accidents as it can advise drivers on local limits or even stop them from speeding. Stephen Wornham, managing director of BriteAngle, said: “It is unacceptable that, with vehicles getting safer and more intelligent, so many people are being involved in road collisions. “This data shows that more needs to be done to ensure motorists are aware of the hazards around them, and drive accordingly.” Department for Transport (DfT) figures show 9,705 people were injured and 159 killed on Scotland’s roads in the 12 months to June. The number of road deaths also rose by 14 per cent in 2016 compared with 2015. ISA technology uses global satellite positioning and a digital map to work out a car’s location and the speed limit on the road it is travelling on. The device can then update drivers on the current limit, or take control of the vehicle through a ‘discretionary’ mode that can be switched off. Charity Brake believes that installing it as standard in new vehicles could help end “untold suffering to families up and down the country”. Alongside ISA technology, Brake is supporting a Bill by Mark Ruskell MSP to introduce 20mph limits in built-up areas in Scotland. The campaigners also called for increased police enforcement of speeding violations. Separate data published on Monday (November 20) revealed that one in five patients admitted to trauma centres across England and Wales last year had been involved in road crashes. Almost 11,486 road users – 31 a day – were admitted to hospital with life-threatening injuries over the period. The figures were released to mark the start of Road Safety Week, which runs from Monday until Sunday (November 26). Jason Wakeford, director of campaigns at Brake, said: “Speeding remains a major problem, causing untold suffering to families up and down the country. “Driving is unpredictable and if something unexpected happens on the road ahead, such as a child stepping out from between parked cars, it’s a driver’s speed that determined whether they can stop in time and, if they can’t, how hard they will hit. “That’s why we’re encouraging everyone to ‘Speed Down Save Lives’ for Road Safety Week this year.”

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