Road rage factor in crashes: new figures

THE Derbyshire Times has obtained shocking figures showing the deadly consequences of aggressive driving on our roads.

We have learned that between 2008 and 2010, 8,951 crashes resulted in someone being killed, seriously injured or slightly injured. In 307 smashes, police recorded aggressive driving – which includes road rage – as a contributory factor.

The figures have been obtained from Derby and Derbyshire Road Safety Partnership as part of the Derbyshire Times’ new campaign, Respect on the Roads, which is aiming to stamp out anger behind the wheel, replacing it with calmness and courtesy.

Chief Inspector Steve Wilson, head of roads policing in Derbyshire, said he supported the campaign and added: “Sadly, we see lots of collisions caused by the attitude of drivers.

“We’ve all got a shared right to use the roads and therefore everyone should be respectful.”

Simon Harris, assistant director of operations for Derbyshire at East Midlands Ambulance Service, also backed the drive. He said: “Road rage is a modern phenomenon in today’s society. Often, emergency services are called to the scene of a tragic accident caused by someone’s frustration against another motorist.”

Glyn Davidson, station manager at Chesterfield Fire Station, said he was pleased to back Respect on the Roads and added: “Like all the emergency services, we struggle with disrespectful driving. Also, we see a lot of careless parking on streets, meaning we can struggle to get down them. This could mean the difference between life and death.”

Every day, there are examples of road rage, inconsiderate driving and a lack of patience on our highways, making them a more dangerous and stressful place to drive. But Respect on the Roads aims to get drivers, riders, cyclists and pedestrians to be more respectful when out and about in the county. We want you, the reader, to pledge your support and join our roll of honour of respectable road users which will be published in the paper.

Send your name, hometown and, if you would like to, why you’re pledging, to, write to Respect on the Road, 37 Station Road, Chesterfield, S41 7XD or via our website, Twitter or Facebook.