Can ‘Naked Roads’ Decrease Road Traffic Accidents in the UK?

Can ‘Naked Roads’ Decrease Road Traffic Accidents in the UK?


Unfortunately, the number of road traffic accidents reported in the UK increased once again for the year 2012. This increase also saw a 3% rise in the number of people killed in such incidents. In fact, statistics have shown that the issueof road traffic accidents is not just a concern for the UK; there has been a sharp increase in the number of deaths caused by road accidents worldwide. According to a report released in 2012, roads are now the biggest killer of young people over the age of 10 (Source: Guardian). It is estimated that 3,500 people die every day in road traffic incidents with a staggering 50 million being injured every year.


So how can governments make roads safer for both pedestrians and road users and reduce the amount deaths and injuries caused? One innovative solution that some countries have begun to introduce is the ‘naked road’ scheme.


Naked Roads


The naked road scheme involves the removal of all road signs, traffic lights and kerbs from streets with many experts claiming this approach reduces speed and accidents as it causes drivers to be more watchful and considerate towards pedestrians. This scheme has already been tested in certain European countries such as Germany and Sweden with preliminary results looking positive.


Many psychologists and urban planners both seem to be in agreement that the scheme can have a positive effect on motorists. It is believed the lack of markings and security measures encourages drivers to slow down and share the road with pedestrians rather than relying on road systems for cues. This system has already been tested in certain parts of the UK with local councils reporting a fall in both accidents and speed. Towns which have implemented this system in Europe have also reported a significant drop in accidents and injuries thus further improving the reputation of this original proposal.


Road traffic accidents are currently the most common forms of injury in the UK. As personal injury solicitors, we have dealt with countless clients who have been injured due to the careless actions of another road user. Whilst the naked road scheme is by no means the perfect solution, it is quite possible this system can reduce the number of deaths and injuries caused every year on Britain’s roads.


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