The UK’s first-ever road safety body will be introduced to investigate and prevent casualties on our nation’s roads. The government has announced that the new Road Safety Investigation Branch (RSIB) will be created following overwhelming support from the public.
The RSIB will be comprised of a specialist team of investigators, recruited by The Department for Transport (DfT), who seek to understand why crashes happen and shine a light on how new technology can prevent casualties.
They will use data from insurance companies, vehicle manufacturers, the emergency services and the NHS to understand why collisions happen and learn valuable road safety lessons. Once trends in the data are identified, they will develop and roll out new road safety interventions across the country.
The team will also provide valuable insights into how new and evolving technology can improve our roads. They are likely to explore innovations like e-scooters, electric vehicles and driverless cars to ensure any new advancements are deployed safely.
Similar independent bodies investigating other types of infrastructure including air, maritime and rail accidents already exist.
The Minister for Roads, Baroness Vere, commented: “We’re establishing the Road Safety Investigation Branch, so we can boost safety for road users even further and also bring safety measures in line with other modes of transport and the future of travel.”
Steve Gooding, director of the RAC Foundation, said: “After a steady decline in road deaths up to 2012, for the past decade the number of annual fatalities has sat stubbornly around the 1,750 mark. Whilst the Covid-related cut in traffic meant fewer people killed, post-pandemic we are likely to see the death toll rise again. To get back on a downward course we need to do something radically different which is exactly what this new approach is about.”