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How to get a good return from your road safety investment

The Reported road casualties in Great Britain: 2016 annual report revealed a 4% increase in the number of road deaths compared to 2015. 1,792 people were killed and 24,101 people were seriously injured in reported road traffic accidents in 2016. Improvements in the number of deaths on our roads have stagnated since 2010 and the introduction of austerity budgets.

The 2010 Emergency Budget included cutting the Road Safety Revenue Grant from £77.3 million to £56.7 million and the removal of the £17.2 million Road Safety Capital Grant. In 2014 the National Audit Office reported a 37% estimated real-terms reduction in funding to local authorities from 2010/11 to 2015/16. Such constrained budgets are surely partly responsible for the lack of improvement in our road safety record.

With such reduced budgets, how can you make the case for continuing to invest in road safety initiatives?

Aside from the unimaginable suffering when a person is killed or injured on the road, there is also an economic cost to be considered. We believe that taking the full costs of an accident into consideration can help to make the case for the road safety initiatives needed to prevent more deaths on our roads.

Across all road types the Department for Transport (DfT) estimates the value of preventing a fatal accident is £2,004,664, a serious accident is £229,757, and an accident resulting in a slight injury is £24,194. These estimates include the loss of output, NHS costs, and the human costs of casualties (based on willingness to pay to avoid pain, grief and suffering).

With such high values these numbers add up to a substantial amount. In the most recent statistics from the DfT, they estimate the total value of prevention of road casualties is around £35.5bn per year.

Calculating the return on investment (ROI) for road safety initiatives using the value of preventing an accident makes a compelling case for investment.

So how can you use these facts and figures to justify the investment needed for a road safety scheme on your network? First, you need to know the accident record over a set time frame, broken down into fatal, serious injuries, and slight injuries. You can then extrapolate the value of preventing these accidents using the DfT figures. You’ll then need to consider other factors such as the type of road and the proportion of the cost of an accident that you are responsible for. Now you know the value to you of preventing the accidents on your roads, you can establish the cost of the road safety initiative and work out the potential savings over time.

This is no simple task, but the result could prove invaluable in making the case for investment and we are here to help. We’ve built this analysis into two simple to use calculators that can help you establish the ROI of two of our safety enhancing solutions, proven to reduce accidents:

1. Our solar powered Active Road Studs provide an enhanced view of the road ahead up to 900m. This extends beyond the beam of a driver’s headlights so they see further ahead and have longer to respond to changes such as sharp bends. Based on accident rates before and after these studs have been installed, their use results in up to 70% fewer accidents.

Use our Active Road Stud ROI calculator to understand the costs involved in an installation, the potential ROI for a scheme on your road, and the payback period.

Roi Tool

2. Our Road Safety Scheme solutions target dangerous junctions to warn drivers of what is happening on the road ahead in real time, causing them to take note of the warnings more than they would with static signage and alter their driving style accordingly.

Use our Road Safety Scheme ROI calculator to understand the potential ROI and payback period for an installation.

Cost Of Accidents Js

Our ROI calculators are free to use and will help you to visualise and build the business case to help justify the financial costs of deploying a solution that can avoid so many needless incidents and save lives. Our solutions experts are also on-hand to provide any necessary information and run through the calculators with you and if you would like their help, please get in touch.

Updated: 3rd October 2017 following the release of The Reported road casualties in Great Britain: 2016 annual report

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