ROAD DANGER REDUCTION
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Despite road deaths outnumbering homicides by 3:1, collision investigation is not a priority for the justice sector. Investigation budgets are only a fraction of those for homicides.
Nor is it a priority for the transport sector. There is no national road collision investigation branch, as there is with rail and air collisions.
There are no national standards in collision investigation. The ACPO Road Death Investigation Manual is advisory. Nor is there any monitoring of procedures used by the 43 different police services.
The progress made with the Road Death Investigation Manual and improved training for collision investigators and Senior Investigation Officers is restricted by budget constraints and has not improved injury collision investigation standards.
Injury collisions are often investigated by general police with minimal training.
Collision investigations by the police focus on criminal prosecution and do not consider the wider prevention issues.
Contributory factors are collected at the beginning of the investigation and seriously underestimate the role of drink driving, fatigue and speed.
What RoadPeace wants
National minimum standards and good practice standards agreed by ACPO and others, including national charity for collision investigators (ITAI).
National road collision investigation centre to be established with improved monitoring and evaluation of collision investigation, including injury collisions.
Improvement of collision investigation to be included in policing and road safety plans.
Fatal collision investigation to consider what would have prevented the collision, or at least the fatality, as in Sweden.
Contributory factors to be considered at the end of the investigation, after witness statements and forensic analysis are complete.
What RoadPeace is doing about it
Working with bereaved families and partners to lobby for improved collision investigation.
Publishing guides on collision investigation for bereaved families and the injured, including checklists.
Giving presentations to police on ways of improving collision investigations.
Highlighting the issue in our road safety and policing related consultation responses.
Campaigning for greater transparency in the legal outcome of collision investigations.
Organised a 2010 conference on
Injury Collisions in London—what makes a good investigation?
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ROAD DANGER REDUCTION