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By Steve Hayes 08/06 Updated: 08/06 15:23
THE NUMBER of people killed or seriously injured on Warwickshire roads went up for the first time in nearly 15 years in 2011.
Recently published figures show a total of 2,078 road users were killed or injured on the county's roads last year.
This was a small reduction compared to 2,091 casualties in 2010 with the annual number of road casualties now having fallen by around a third over the last decade.
But the news was not all good as the numbers killed or seriously injured rose to 313 up from 301 in 2010, with fatal casualties rising from 25 to 33.
It was the first time the number of people killed or seriously injured has gone up since 1997.
And there were also noticeable increases in the number of deaths or serious injuries amongst motorcyclists, cyclists, older road users and 16-24 year old drivers and passengers.
Cyclist casualties also rose significantly by 24 to 163.
And there were 171 motorcyclists killed or seriously injured in 2011, up from 150 in 2010.
For the second year running, there was also a slight rise in the number of 16 to 24 year-old road users killed or seriously injured - though the total number of casualties in the age group fell for the fifth successive year.
The number of child casualties, at 144 was more than 20 per cent lower than in 2010, while pedestrian casualties fell for the third successive year.
Warwickshire County Council's community protection chief, Coun Richard Hobbs, said the figures presented a 'mixed picture' and conceded some were 'disappointing'.
He said: "It is encouraging that there have been improvements in some areas, particularly a reduction in overall road casualties. On the other hand it is disappointing that fatal and serious injury casualties have increased.
"However, looking at the longer term picture, this is the first time fatal and serious injuries have increased since 1997, and the number of deaths and serious injuries is less then half what it was a decade ago.
"Our challenge now is to build on the areas where progress has been made and to work hard to ensure that the rise in fatal and serious injuries doesn’t become a trend."
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