There has been little change in road safety in the UK since 2012, according to the latest data. In 2017 there were 1,793 road deaths on the UK road network, compared with 1,792 in 2016. There were 24,831 serious injuries resulting from road crashes in 2017 as well as 170,993 casualties of all types. This last represents a 6% drop from the previous year, despite a 1.1% increase in motor traffic volumes for 2017 compared with 2016. The figure for casualties of all types, 170,993, is in fact the lowest on record since road safety data collation commenced in the late 1940s.
Of note though is the UK’s road safety improvement over the longer period. There were 2,222 road deaths in the UK in 2009 and 2,946 road deaths in 2007. This reveals a 39% drop in road deaths in the 10 years from 2007 to 2017. Going further back in time, there were over 6,300 road deaths in the UK in 1979, when enforcement of speeding and drink driving was lax, before seat belt use was mandatory and when vehicles had much poorer safety standards than today.