HC Deb 30 October 1957 vol 575 c195
34. Captain Pilkington

asked the Minister of Transport and Civil Aviation the rate of accidents per 1,000 vehicles on the roads in 1938 and in 1956.

Mr. Nugent

Accidents involving personal injury numbered 64 per 1,000 vehicles in 1938 and 33 in 1956.

Captain Pilkington

Does my hon. Friend ascribe this mainly to better roads, better drivers or better pedestrians?

Mr. Nugent

It is due to a number of factors, not the least of which is better road safety measures.

Mr. S. Silverman

Is not the interesting deduction to be drawn from these figures that the very much higher rate of road accidents, injuries and fatalities, is due exclusively to the fact that the roads are so much more congested, and ought that not to encourage the Government to go on with the road programme more expeditiously?

Mr. Nugent

The hon. Member has the deduction the wrong way round. The figure in 1956 was 33 per 1,000——

Mr. Silverman

Yes, I know.

Mr. Nugent

—as compared with 64 per 1,000 in 1938. More than twice as many vehicles are on the roads today. I think I ought to make this point in drawing deductions. This is not a measurement of the mileage actually driven by these vehicles. It is difficult, therefore, to draw any precise deduction from it.

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