Data reveals danger on Hackney roads with highest number of casualties

Hackney Low Traffic Neighbourhood; Pic: Emily-Rose Payne

Hackney has the most dangerous roads in the UK, according to data from Department for Transport.

Local Driving School, a professional driving instructor group, analysed the data released by the Department for Transport and found Hackney Borough reached the top of the list with 2,828 road casualties per billion miles driven. Other boroughs followed: Camden (2,511), Westminster (2,429), Lambeth (2,422) and Islington (2,348).

They found that nearly 70 per cent of incidents in 2020 happened in yrban areas in 30 miles per hour zones. A further 71.2% of accidents happen in daylight, and 68.7 per cent took place in wet conditions.

Claire Davies, marketing manager at Local Driving School said: “Always stay alert to any movement on the pavement. Take care driving past people walking erratically and watch out for children near the roadside. 

“As you approach people near a pedestrian crossing, slow in anticipation of someone stepping out. The use of mirrors is a necessity too. Check mirrors especially when turning or switching lanes in urban areas.”

Low Traffic Neighbourhoods were introduced to Hackney on June 30 2020 during the Covid-19 pandemic to encourage people to walk, exercise, and cycle during lockdown restrictions. This would create a safer environment, especially areas with young children or densely populated areas. All traffic measures are being introduced using an experimental traffic order for 18 months. 

School Streets, a scheme where the road outside a school is closed to most vehicles during school opening and closing times, has also been adopted by Hackney Council. Over 14,000 children walk or cycle to school in Hackney, the new scheme protects commuters from an increase in traffic after the lockdown. There have been 33 schools trial this new safety scheme in the borough. 

On September 6, a group of residents who challenged the controversial low traffic network scheme had their case thrown out by the High Court. The new data supports the reasons to why they were introduced.

Town Hall Transport Councillor Mete Coban said: “The Emergency Transport Plan aligns with the council’s aim to reduce toxic air pollution and reimagine the future of our neighbourhoods, but was produced in the wake of statutory guidance to reallocate road space for walking and cycling as part of the recovery from lockdown prompted by the coronavirus pandemic.

“We have always been clear that our ambitions and policies are about reducing toxic air pollution, and reimagining the future of our neighbourhoods.

“Around 40 per cent of traffic in Hackney passes through the borough without stopping, and our LTNs are focused on reclaiming our streets for local people and supporting them to safely walk, cycle and use public transport.”

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