A new report claims a Lincolnshire road is the most dangerous in Britain.
The ten mile stretch of the A18 from Laceby to Ludborough is top of the list of Britain’s ‘most persistent high risk roads’ in figures released by the Road Safety Foundation (RSF).
The report says that the number of serious and fatal crashes has risen from 10 (in 2008-2010) to 17 (2011-13), stating that the road section is ‘rural and tree-lined, winding and narrow’.
It continues: “These characteristics are likely to explain the high concentration of run-off crashes on the route (41%).”
In addition, the nine mile stretch of the A155 at Revesby, which runs from Tattershall (A153) to the A16, has been listed as the ‘highest risk road’ in the East Midlands region.
The risk is calculated by comparing the frequency of road crashes resulting in death and serious injury on every stretch of road across Britain with how much traffic each road is carrying.
The report also reveals the financial cost of road deaths and says the largest single cause of death is running off the road with the largest cause of serious injury being at junctions.
John Siddle, speaking for Lincolnshire Road Safety Partnership, however, believes the report is not a true reflection of the picture in Lincolnshire.
He said: “This data is from 2011 to 2013 but the way they have done it is they have looked at the cost of these collisions and divided it by the population of the county so that the cost per person is going to be multiplied.
“We are not a thoroughfare as say London to Glasgow. We do not carry the thoroughfare of traffic so we are always going to look bad because of that.
“If you liken us to Nottinghamshire and trying to apply the same demographic it is actually like taking the whole population of Nottingham city out. Every county has its own issues and problems and how to solve them. We could say this is a county issue and these are rural roads and we are addressing these issues because of being rural.
“The safest roads are motorways. We do not have motorways so the picture changes. The M6 carries hundreds of thousands of vehicles every day. The figures are biased because A we don’t have motorways and B we do not have the population.”
A spokesman for North Lincolnshire County Council also pointed out that the figures in the report date to 2013 and said ‘a number of improvements have been made to the A18 since then’. He said: “Most significant is the lowering of the speed limit to 50mph.
“This was done in late 2013 after an extensive review of speed limits and road safety in the borough. A number of other alterations have also been made including changes to the road markings as part of other highway maintenance works which are taking place under the current road closure.”
Caroline Moore from the RSF said she was surprised by Mr Siddle’s comments that the figures were biased because our region of Lincolnshire does not have motorways. She said: “You can have more crashes on motorways as there is more volume of traffic.”
Malcolm Maidens, owner of East Kirkby Service Station, which sits on the A155, said he believes speed is an issue.
He said: “We have got a 40 mph limit here but people are coming through faster than that. It’s as if when they see a sign for 40 mph they feel they can go faster.
“If we had speed cameras I think that would slow people down.”
Some of the facts given were:
Highways England handles the biggest single crash costs of any authority: £2.1bn over the 3-year period (2011-2013).
The most persistently high risk road in Britain is the A18 Laceby to Ludborough.
The highest risk road is the A155 in Lincolnshire between Tattershall and the A16.
The largest single cause of death is running off the road.
The largest cause of serious injury is at junctions.
The East Midlands which includes Lincolnshire is (along with Wales) overall the riskiest place to use the roads.