A study of traffic throughout 100 European cities has revealed that the UK’s roads are the most congested of any European country, with nearly three times the amount of traffic hotspots as second place Germany, which is more than 20,000 traffic hotspots more in total.
Collision risks and reforms
The findings come at a critical point for UK law as the Government’s recent Autumn Statement revealed proposals to scrap compensation whiplash and increase the small claims limit from £1,000 to £5,000.
Insurance companies have campaigned vigorously for the changes to be introduced and the fact that our roads see so many more accidents than other rival European cities is one of their favourite propaganda pieces.
However, these latest findings highlight the reasons why there are so many more accidents, whereby soft tissue injuries such as whiplash can occur, as our roads are far more crowded.
The figures can also give an insight as to the potential number of personal injury sufferers, who would be without legal aid and without compensation should they be involved in an accident, following the inceptions of these proposed reforms.
The removal of all soft tissue injuries has been lauded by insurers under the guise that it will rid the UK of it’s shocking ‘compensation culture’. However, clearly the problem with this method is that it also harms thousands of people who are legitimately injury, as they would no longer be able to claim compensation for time off work, repair of their vehicle and medical costs following a whiplash injury (even when the injury was not their fault).
Traffic hotpots and risks
Being densely populated, UK cities are bound to see some level of traffic and congestion. However, the government has come under scrutiny for the extent of traffic as the study shows that despite having less cities with 250,000 residents, there are nearly 3 times more traffic hotpots (20,375) than the 2nd ranked country Germany (8,517).
This year’s Autumn Statement promised an extra £1.3 billion to ease traffic on congested roads including adding expressways and improving public transport options for commuters. What the study illustrates in accordance with the autumn statement is that measures need to be undertaken as soon as possible to improve not only congestion, but safety.
Non flowing traffic creates a number of problems, not only taking time away from a driver’s day but also creating a riskier environment as drivers have to adapt to stop/ start traffic and make decisions they would not have to make on a free flowing road or motorway.
How traffic starts
Fighting the changes
UK Solicitors have joined to fight together to stop the reforms. The movement known as ‘Access To Justice’ looks to ensure that legitimate claimants are not left without help and without representation when they rightfully should be entitled to it.
If you would like to know more about Access to Justice and help join the fight you can see all the latest updates here. You can also help by signing the petition to keep the personal injury small claims limit at £1,000 and damages for whiplash.
- Wikimedia Commons; Wikipedia; https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/d/d3/London_01_2013_traffic_jam_5601.JPG
- Fignetto; Pixabay.com; https://pixabay.com/en/crash-car-car-crash-accident-1308575/