Chief Officers from the three top emergency services speak out about their concerns in the number of people being killed on the roads in Cheshire.
In 2017 there were 21 fatal collisions and 22 deaths on Cheshire's road. In 2018, 46 people lost their lives as a result of 40 fatal road traffic collision. So far this year 22 people have died, which is more than one a week.
Chief Constable, Darren Martland, Chief Fire Officer, Mark Cashin and Chief Executive Officer of North West Ambulance Service, Daren Mochrie are warning that more people could lose their lives on our roads if motorists don't think about how they drive, consider the conditions of the road and assess their surroundings.
Investigations into collisions show that some of the fatalities could have been prevented, and that the biggest killer on the roads is motorists driving carelessly, followed by driving too fast, driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol, not wearing a seatbelt, and driving while using a mobile phone – together known as the Fatal 5.
Chief Constable Darren Martland said: "From a policing perspective, this is Cheshire's biggest killer. People are dying on our roads as a result of motorists' poor driving, reckless decisions and momentary lapses in concentration. Fatal collisions are heart-breaking – for the family, for the community, and for the responding emergency services staff who have to witness the tragedy and subsequent aftermath. Stopping any more deaths from occurring as a result of something unnecessary and totally avoidable is a top priority for us.
"While it is absolutely necessary that officers are out enforcing the laws of the road, it's also about educating road users on how to drive safely, and we will be working closely with our Cheshire Road Safety Group colleagues to help prevent further tragedies from occurring."
Chief Fire Officer Mark Cashin said: "The number of people that have been killed or seriously injured on our roads as a result of careless driving is a real concern for us. Firefighters do a great job of rescuing people from collisions. Sadly, it is sometimes just too late and our firefighters have seen far too many fatalities and life-changing injuries on the roads as a result of something completely preventable. One reckless decision can cost you, or an innocent member of the public, their life.
"It is absolutely crucial we educate motorists on how to use the roads safely. All vehicles today are designed to keep us safe but, when driven badly, they can turn into a lethal machine. Human error is by far the biggest contributory factor to fatal collisions and if a person drives carelessly. No matter how safe you think your vehicle is, the risk of a serious collision occurring is increased considerably. It's just not worth dying for."
Daren Mochrie, Chief Executive for NWAS said: "We see all too often the devastation that is caused by careless and dangerous driving. Lives have been unnecessarily lost due to careless driving and we really urge drivers to think twice before they get behind the wheel and help avoid this heartbreaking situation from happening.
"It takes just one of the five fatal factors to cause an accident and just a bit of extra care to prevent them. Please don't take the risk and only drive when it's safe to do so."