A new strategy to improve the safety of Calderdale roads will be discussed by Calderdale Council’s Cabinet on Wednesday 10 May 2017.
The Council has already made a firm commitment to improving local road safety. Since 2014 it has been implementing a roll out of 20mph areas in streets and villages across Calderdale.
Early findings show this is having an impact, with a 20% reduction in injuries in 20 mph areas following their introduction. Even a 1mph reduction in speed reduces the risk of accidents by 6%.
This year the Council is also investing £100,000 in a one-off project to support road safety and speed limit enforcement. The funding will be used, in partnership with West Yorkshire Police, to help reduce speeding and stamp out dangerous driving.
Calderdale Council’s Cabinet Member for Regeneration and Economic Development, Cllr Barry Collins said:
We are making an unprecedented investment in our highways network, thanks to support from the West Yorkshire Plus Transport Fund. Road safety is a priority within all our schemes, which will be engineered to protect all road users, whether that’s motorists, cyclists, public transport users or pedestrians.
Calderdale’s Community Safety Partnership, which includes the Council, West Yorkshire Police, West Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service and Yorkshire Ambulance Service has now developed the Calderdale Road Safety Strategy 2017 – 2020 to make sure local roads are as safe as possible.
The Community Safety Partnership agreed to develop the strategy in September 2016, to help co-ordinate road safety initiatives across Calderdale, led by Martyn Greenwood, District Commander for West Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service.
The aim of the strategy is not only to reduce the number of accidents on local roads, but to also encourage people to become more physically active; ease congestion; improve air quality and tackle anti-social behaviour.
Ward Councillors have reported an increasing number of complaints about anti-social driving and inconsiderate parking from residents, and road safety is becoming a significant issue for local communities.
Calderdale Council’s Cabinet Member for Neighbourhoods and Communities and joint Chair of the Community Safety Partnership, Cllr Susan Press said:
This is one of the main concerns which residents raise with Councillors across the borough. Roads go through the heart of our communities, so it’s vital that people feel safe using them.
This strategy will help make everyone feel safer and should lead to a significant reduction in the number of collisions and casualties on our roads.
District Commander at West Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service, Martyn Greenwood said:
In Calderdale there are some fine examples of local innovation to improve road safety. The Road Safety Strategy does acknowledge the concerns and views of local people though. These include inconsiderate parking, speeding, using mobile devices while driving, and general anti-social behaviour on the district’s roads.
The strategy therefore seeks to coordinate partnership initiatives and harness the passion of all stakeholders. It also provides the blueprint for sustainable improvements in the health and well-being of our local communities.
Five priority areas have been identified which will help to make Calderdale’s roads safer:
- Educate ‘at risk’ groups and individuals
- Engage with local communities
- Enforce legislation and taking a robust approach to dangerous and anti-social behaviour
- Engineer roads to reduce the safety risk by improving the carriageways and transportation links
- Communicate effectively with partners and local stakeholders
These priorities will be delivered through an annual action plan. The long term aim is to reduce road casualties to zero, and although it is not anticipated that this can be achieved within the three years of the strategy, it will seek to reduce the number of incidents and casualties on Calderdale’s roads significantly.
The Cabinet will be asked to comment on the three-year strategy and to recommend it to Full Council for approval and adoption at the next meeting, which will be held at 6pm on Wednesday 10 May 2017 at Halifax Town Hall.