§ Mr. Ian Bruce
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what information he has on the figures on road deaths in rural Dorset; and what assessment he has made of the extent to which there is a relationship between fatal road accidents and inadequate roads.
§ Mr. Atkins
Over the past five years, an average of 35 people have been killed each year on non built-up roads in Dorset. On average, 12 of these were on minor roads, the remainder on major roads.513W
The Department is very aware of the need for safe roads, and in January 1988 introduced a new skidding resistance standard for trunk roads. By providing the highest levels of skidding resistance where they are most needed, it is expected that 1,800 road casualties, including 75 fatalities, will be saved each year on trunk roads.
Local authorities have followed the Department's lead by incorporating the standard within their own code of good practice for highway maintenance.