Mum Of Injured Youngster Calls For Improved Road Safety To Boost ‘All Time Low’ Road Death Figures

Number Of Pedestrians Killed In Region More Than Halved


By Suzanne Rutter

Specialist serious injury lawyers have welcomed new figures which show the number of road deaths have decreased in the last year but say more still needs to be done to prevent pedestrians and motorists being hurt.

According to figures released by the South Yorkshire Safer Roads Partnership there were five deaths in 2012 compared to 12 in 2011.

But the number of pedestrians seriously injured rose from 139 in 2011 to 144 in 2012. Last year, a further 489 pedestrians suffered minor injuries on the region’s roads.

The figures were released to mark UN Road Safety Week, which will run from 6 to 12 May and will this year focus on improving pedestrian safety.

The reduction in the number of fatalities and the ongoing work to improve road safety have been welcomed by Kate Petchey from Irwin Mitchell’s Sheffield office, who specialises in helping  people affected by serious road traffic incidents.

She said: “At Irwin Mitchell we see the devastating consequences that a road traffic collision can have on people’s lives, whether it is the loss suffered by the family of someone killed on our roads, or the life-changing effect of serious injuries suffered by pedestrians.

“These figures from the South Yorkshire Safer Roads Partnership which show that the number of deaths on the region’s roads is decreasing are reassuring. However, it is still of concern that the number of pedestrians injured on the roads in South Yorkshire has increased in the past year.  As such we welcome road safety initiatives and awareness raising events like UN Road Safety Week.

“We hope these figures will not only highlight the good work being done to prevent deaths on South Yorkshire’s roads but will also act as a reminder about the importance of pedestrian safety in our region.”

Leasa Ward’s son Mitchell Mason was nine when he suffered serious head injuries after being knocked down in a hit-and-run on the Manor estate in Sheffield in June 2011.

Mitchell, a pupil at Woodthorpe Primary School, was rushed to Sheffield Children’s Hospital where he underwent life-saving surgery to remove part of his skull to allow his brain to swell and the pressure to reduce.

Mitchell amazed doctors and his family as he learnt to walk and talk again after the crash and even won a Champion Child award at the 2011 Sheffield Night of Honour Awards at City Hall.

Leasa, 37, has been campaigning for road safety improvements ever since Mitchell’s accident.

She said: “Mitchell’s injuries have had a massive impact on him and the whole family, it’s been the most difficult time of all our lives coming to terms with his injuries, but there’s been some fantastic milestones too seeing him progress so well. He’s a little fighter and we are all so proud of him.

“One death or injury on the roads is one too many and although it’s encouraging that the number of people dying because of road crashes is positive I still think more needs to be done to protect pedestrians, especially vulnerable children like Mason.

“I don’t want other kids, or their families, to go through what we have and I hope the figures released today are a wake-up call that accidents still do happen and lives are tragically turned upside down. Hopefully then drivers will take more care on the roads.”

If you or a loved one has suffered an injury, or if a loved one has died as a result of a pedestrian accident, our specialist pedestrian accident claims team help you to secure compensation. Visit our Road Accident Claims page for more information.