Decision Maker: Cabinet Member for Highways and Transport
Decision status: Recommendations Approved
Is Key decision?: Yes
Is subject to call in?: Yes
Vision Zero road safety strategy for Kent states an ambition of zero deaths on Kent’s roads by 2050, adopting the Safe Systems Approach which includes: Safe Roads and Streets, Safe Speed, Safe Behaviours, Safe Vehicles and Post Collision Response, to achieve this goal. The strategy proposes ‘Community CIRCLE’ listening to and working with local communities to reduce road danger, to enable KCC to be more proactive in our approach.
· Options (other options considered but discarded)
Not to adopt the new strategy but this would mean continuing with a primarily reactive approach to road safety which does not reflect the ambition of zero deaths on Kent’s roads by 2050 or the broader proactive working with partners and local communities supported by the Safe systems approach
· How the proposed decision meets the challenges in the Interim Strategic Plan
Financial Challenge: Cost Avoidance: The costs from road injuries are significant, the social care implications alone of a serious injury to a child are substantial. Safer roads and streets will lower these costs in the long term. It is also essential that this authority produces an ambitious strategy to stand a good chance of attracting central government and grant funding.
Economic Challenge: Development of safer streets could be part of the investment to spur growth. Increasing the public’s confidence that their journey will be safe, can only benefit the economic recovery from the pandemic.
Demand Challenge: Working with partners, stakeholders, and communities to share responsibility for road safety will in the medium to long term reduce demand for KCC services.
Partnership Challenge: Vision Zero - Safe Systems – Community CIRCLE is all about working in partnership to achieve combined goals. Partnering with communities, stakeholders, internal teams, and departments. Working with KALC members will be the focal point.
Environmental Challenge: Creating safer streets will encourage more walking and cycling and lower car use with benefits for health, environment, and air quality. The focus on safer vehicles will also have benefits in creating cleaner vehicles.
· Financial Implications:
It is essential that the authority maintains its financial commitment to road safety education and engineering. The revenue budget for the Casualty Reduction Team for staff and education, training and publicity, transport intelligence, safety camera partnership, safer mobility and road crossing patrols currently stands at £1,810k pa. This does not include the capital budgets required for engineering works.
The implementation of the strategy and the drafting and development of subsequent delivery plans will be met from existing base budgets. This will allow us to build the evidence base to leverage in central government funding, the level of which will depend on how quickly we will be able to meet our Vision Zero aspirations. At the time of writing, we do not have details for the next funding round.
There are therefore no direct immediate financial implications for this strategy, as it outlines a new approach which can be tailored to available funding. In the longer term the adoption of this strategy will enable KCC to lever higher levels of funding for safer roads and streets from central government and charities.
Reducing the level of serious injuries on Kent’s roads will also reduce the County Council’s spending on social care and special education.
· Legal Implications
There are no legal issues regarding the strategy.
· Equalities implications
An EqIA was undertaken before we went to consultation which showed no major equalities issues. Representatives of protected characteristic groups were invited to consult on the strategy and attend stakeholder meetings. Disability groups for instance have contributed to the consultation and are supportive of Vision Zero.
· Data Protection implications
The consultation report has been developed closely with the consultation team to ensure that no personal data is shared.
As Cabinet Member for Highways and Transport, I agree to formally adopt Vision Zero – The Road Safety Strategy for Kent 2021 – 2026 for subsequent development of delivery plans and pilots.
Publication date: 07/07/2021
Date of decision: 07/07/2021
Effective from: 15/07/2021