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Calls for more freight by rail during Road Safety Week

21 November 2016

Campaigners are calling on the Government to commit to moving more freight by rail to help reduce the number of fatalities caused by heavy goods vehicles (HGVs).

The call comes during Road Safety Week (21 to 28 November) as HGVs are almost six times more likely than cars to be involved in fatal collisions on minor roads and are involved in almost half (45 per cent) of fatal collisions on motorways, despite accounting for only 12 per cent of the miles driven on them. 

Philippa Edmunds, Freight on Rail Manager, said: “Removing HGVs from the road network has a number of benefits, not least in making our roads safer and reducing fatalities, but also in improving air quality and reducing carbon emissions and congestion. Rail is the safer, greener alternative for long distance consumer freight traffic, but there is currently a suppressed demand for these rail services because of lack of capacity on the rail network. The Government must prioritise funding to the Strategic Rail Freight Network to help improve road safety and reduce congestion and air pollution.”

ENDS

For further information please contact Alice Ridley on 020 7566 6495 / 07984 773 468 or alice.ridley@bettertransport.org.uk

Notes to Editors

 

References: Table TRA 0104 and table RAS 30017

  1. Rail freight produces 76 per cent less carbon dioxide emissions than HGVs per equivalent journey -  Department for Transport, Rail Freight Strategy September 2016
  2. Freight on Rail is a partnership between Campaign for Better Transport, the rail freight industry and transport trade unions.