Vow to keep roads safe despite 25 per cent cuts to funding

LINCOLNSHIRE Road Safety Partnership has vowed to keep the county’s roads safe – despite facing spending cuts of £200,000.

The county council’s budget for road safety has been slashed by 25 per cent from £800,000 to £600,000 because of local authority austerity measures, meaning the partnership has had to rein in many of its plans for the roads of Lincolnshire.

But the partnership has said this will not be a barrier to protecting people on the roads, and insisted it meant the group would simply have to alter the way it approaches safety promotion.

Spokesman John Siddle told The Standard: “We are fairly confident we can still deliver a good, effective road safety message for the people of Lincolnshire within the constraints of these budget reductions because we started working very early on to make sure we could do that.

“When we have previously had money we would run a project to see where it went, now we need to focus on the vulnerable groups out there.”

Vulnerable groups are young drivers, aged between 17 and 24, motorcyclists, cyclists and more mature drivers, he added.

Lincolnshire County Council’s head of highways Brian Thompson said: “We remain committed to doing all we can to ensure people’s safety on the roads. We will carry on through the Lincolnshire Road Safety Partnership to target vulnerable groups to reduce accidents on the roads.”

He added that the reduction was in line with other austerity measures in the local authority.

However, Simon Best, the chief executive of the Institute of Advanced Motoring said it ‘makes no sense’ to cut road safety spending so hard.

He said: “Austerity is forcing councils to make difficult choices, but cuts of this scale risk lives.”

In 2011, 411 people were killed or seriously injured on the roads of Lincolnshire.

A study from the Institute of Advanced Motorists revealed that the average council cut in road safety funding was 15 per cent.