Strategy approved to drive up road safety standards in St Helens Borough
St Helens Borough Council's Cabinet has approved a new five-year road safety strategy to help ensure that its highway network remains safe and accessible for all.
Article date: 25 May 2023
In line with the Liverpool City Region's very own road safety strategy launched last year - through five key pillars: Safe Speeds, Safe Roads, Safe Behaviours, Safe Vehicles and Post-Crash Response, the council is aiming to achieve 'Vision Zero' - an ambitious target to lead to no avoidable collisions which result in fatalities or life-changing injuries on the local authority-maintained network by 2040.
Over the past five years, more than 1,000 collisions and 22 fatalities have occurred on the St Helens Borough highway network.
The road safety strategy proposes an evidence and data-led approach to ensure limited resources are used in areas of greatest need - and promotes walking and cycling as a safe and easy choice, with a number of active travel schemes already underway in the borough.
Seen as a key project to kick-start an active travel revolution, work is progressing well to construct the region's first Cyclops junction which segregate cyclists from motorists, reducing the possibility of collisions or conflict - one of a number of improvements ongoing at Lea Green Railway Station which will also see seven cycling and walking routes installed to safely connect Lea Green to nearby residential, leisure and employment areas.
In response to recent collisions and fatal incidents, the council has also introduced a series of measures in hotspot locations, including the Rainford Bypass, such as reduced speed limits and improvements to signage and road markings - while the council's dedicated road safety team continues to engage with local schools, with several having taken part in a School Streets scheme which closes roads outside of schools off to vehicles during drop-off and collection times.
Welcoming the strategy, St Helens Borough Council Deputy Leader and Cabinet Member for Strategic Transport, Councillor Seve Gomez Aspron MBE, said: "Despite data showing the road safety risks in St Helens Borough is slightly lower than region trends, every death or serious injury on our roads is one too many.
"As a council, we're responsible for 484 miles of road and a further 553 miles of footways which I am determined to ensure are kept safe, accessible and in the best possible condition they can be, whether you drive, walk or cycle.
"This strategy highlights the specific actions we plan to take in order to manage road safety where prevailing risks are highest and demonstrates how this will work in practice, ensuring that our approach is objective, consistent and based on evidence to help us achieve our goal of creating a safe and well-connected network which supports economic growth development and decarbonisation ambitions."
To read the road safety strategy in full, visit: https://sthelens.moderngov.co.uk/documents/s145299/Appendix%201.pdf