Safer roads plan for Bristol is backed by councillors

Plans to make Bristol roads safer have been backed by councillors but questions were raised about funding.

More than 100 people a year are seriously injured in car crashes on the city’s roads, leading to cross-party calls for the council to make driving less dangerous.

A new target was set for zero deaths or serious injuries within seven years, according to a BBC report.

Green Councillor David Wilcox said “nobody should have to risk their lives” on roads.

According to the latest government data, eight people were killed in 2021, and on average 134 people are seriously injured each year in Bristol.

Mr Wilcox, shadow cabinet member for transport, put forward a motion asking other political parties to back the pledge of zero road deaths by 2030, during a full council meeting.

He suggested the council lower speed limits, install speed bumps and cameras and change the design of dangerous junctions, the Local Democracy Reporting Service said.

Mr Wilcox said: “Collisions and crashes are avoidable, as are deaths and serious injuries from them – we can and we must prevent them, by engineering out the potential for serious harm, by slowing vehicles down and separating road users.

“Nobody should have to risk their lives or their children’s lives driving, cycling or walking in our city. The only acceptable number of deaths and serious injuries on our roads is zero.”

Labour, Conservatives and Liberal Democrats backed the motion, but raised questions about who would pay for the work needed to stop so many people dying or getting seriously injured.

Tories also objected to a specific part of the motion criticising electronic billboards.

Labour councillor Tim Rippington said: “The issue of funding cannot be ignored here.

“We obviously support the concept of making our streets safer and are doing so through various projects like School Streets, Liveable Neighbourhoods, and an extensive pedestrianisation programme.

“But we cannot possibly accelerate their delivery without identifying the funding streams to enable the planning, consultation and construction of these projects.

“Actions in the [motion] are laudable but will need to have future funding identified. Road deaths are neither acceptable nor inevitable, and we’re happy to support this motion.”


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