The latest statistics on how many people have been killed or seriously injured on Greater Manchester’s roads has been released.
Department for Transport (DfT) figures show how many casualties there were in the city-region for 2021 and also show that people have been hurt or lost their lives while riding e-scooters.
The data has been analysed by our sister title NationalWorld and compared it to the figures for the past decade.
It shows there has been a clear trend across much of Greater Manchester since 2012 - but with one major exception.
Responding to the national figures, the AA gave its reaction to the news that the 2021 statistics show the safer roads experienced during the lockdowns and Covid-19 restrictions in 2020 did not last and that e-scooter casualties are increasing year-on-year.
What does the data show for Greater Manchester?
The provisional DfT stats show that in 2021 there were 182 people killed or seriously injured in Manchester, with 83 in Salford, 69 in Stockport, 61 in Trafford and 108 in Tameside.
There were 91 road casualties in Bolton, 67 in Bury, 59 in Oldham, 57 in Rochdale and 66 in Wigan.
In total 65 people were reported as being killed on the city-region’s roads in 2021.
Of those 12 took place in Manchester and 11 in Tameside, with eight in Bolton, seven in Bury, four in Oldham, four in Rochdale, five in Salford, seven in Stockport, four in Trafford and three in Wigan.
Our data team have compared the latest figures with over the past decade to figure out how casualty levels have changed on the region’s roads since 2012.
Nine of the 10 Greater Manchester boroughs saw a reduction in the number of people killed or seriously injured on the roads in that time.
The exception was Tameside, where casualties have risen from 76 in 2012 to 108 last year, an increase of 42%.
The exact same picture is observed when looking at the data for all injuries reported to the police from road incidents, including minor ones.
Tameside was the only local authority in Greater Manchester, and indeed in the whole of the North West, to see a percentage increase in total injuries on the roads between 2012 and 2021.
The figures do not necessarily represent the full picture of casualties on Greater Manchester’s roads as there is no obligation to report all personal injury collisions to the police.
When looking at the numbers of people killed or seriously injured we have used adjusted figures published by the DfT to account for the fact that there have been changes to the way incidents are recorded over time and also geographical disparities in how things are logged.
Generally speaking, the 2021 statistics showed casualties increasing on the roads after the very unusual circumstances of 2020 when unprecedented restrictions on travel and movement were brought in during the fight against Covid-19.
However, only half of Greater Manchester’s 10 boroughs showed increases in people being killed or seriously injured between 2020 and 2021. They were Bolton, Bury, Manchester, Tameside and Trafford.
In Oldham, Rochdale and Wigan, though, fewer people died or suffered serious injuries on the roads in 2021 than the previous year, while in Salford and Stockport the figures for the two years were identical.
What do the statistics on e-scooters show?
The DfT has also released statistics on casualties in collisions involving e-scooters.
There were 18 people who sustained some kind of injury or lost their lives in an e-scooter incident in Greater Manchester in 2021.
This accounts for 1% of all the incidents involving e-scooters reported to the country’s police forces last year.
There were no casualties involving e-scooters in 2020 reported to Greater Manchester Police (GMP).
Some police forces also have data on whether the e-scooters involved in collisions were rented as part of trials of the vehicles or were privately owned ones which cannot legally be ridden on the roads. However, GMP is not one of the forces for which this information is available.
What has the AA said about the road casualty figures?
The AA said it was regrettable that the lower casualty figures in 2020, when there were more coronavirus-related restrictions in place, were not replicated last year as the country began to get back to something like normal.
Jack Cousens, head of roads policy, said; “As the lockdowns eased, we were hopeful that the reduction seen in the 2020 road casualties statistics could be maintained for longer, but sadly that wasn’t the case.
“The one glimmer of hope is that the total number of casualties last year remains lower than pre-pandemic levels, so we need that to be the turning point in order to make our roads as safe as possible.”
Mr Cousens said cycling fatalities dropped by a fifth last year compared to 2020 across the country as a whole and said this was welcome. He also expressed the hope that changes to the Highway Code will continue to make getting about on two wheels safer.
He also looked at the data on e-scooters, which shows collisions occurring more frequently each year as the vehicles become more common sights around the country.
Mr Cousens said: “We are still learning about the type of incidents e-scooters are involved in as well as the kinds of injuries they create. While the number of collisions increased significantly from 2020, initial reporting shows that e-scooter riders are more likely to hurt themselves rather than others.”