Number of road deaths rises by 3%
The number of people killed on the roads has increased in the last year, Government figures have shown.
There were 1,901 deaths on British roads in 2011, a 3% rise compared to 2010, and 23,122 people were seriously injured - up 2%.
Figures released in the Department for Transport's (DfT) annual report on reported road casualties revealed that the number of fatalities rose for pedestrians and car occupants, by 12% and 6% respectively compared to 2010, but fell for other types of road users.
The number of motorcyclist deaths fell by 10%, pedal cyclists by 4% and 22% for coach and bus occupants.
The report also showed that there was a drop in casualties of all severities in all road accidents reported to police - a figure of 203,950, down by 2% when compared to 2010. In 2011, it is estimated that 9,990 reported casualties happened when someone was driving whilst over the legal alcohol limit.
Brake spokeswoman Julie Townsend said: "As a charity supporting bereaved and injured road crash victims, we are dismayed to see rising road deaths and serious injuries across Britain, meaning more lives lost and more people suffering terribly and needlessly, and a greater burden on local economies.
"We hope these statistics will spur the Government to implement progressive policies that we know help make walking and cycling safer, and prevent young driver crashes.
"We also urge drivers, passengers, and everyone on the roads to help protect themselves, loved ones and other road users by making Brake's Pledge: because we can all play a part in making roads safer. Road deaths and serious injuries are devastating but preventable, so we must work together towards eliminating them."
Robert Gifford, executive director of the Parliamentary Advisory Council for Transport Safety, said: "The new Secretary of State has identified that road safety remains a key priority for his department and for the Hovernment.
"These figures show him clearly why this should be so. For deaths to rise in the time of a recession and when traffic levels have remained broadly static suggests that our roads are becoming more dangerous for citizens rather than safer."