Northern Ireland

56 people killed on Northern Ireland's roads in 2013

police accident scene
Image caption A total of 56 people died on Northern Ireland's roads last year

Fifty-six people were killed on Northern Ireland's roads last year - eight more than in 2012, according to provisional police figures.

PSNI Superintendent David Moore said the number of deaths for 2013 was still one of the lowest recorded in 80 years.

But he added that one death is "one too many".

Environment Minister Mark H Durkan said reducing the number of deaths and serious injuries on Northern Ireland's roads was vital.

"It only takes one bad choice to ruin a life. We all share the road, so we all share the responsibility to prevent these collisions," he said.

"Our ambition is now that of zero road deaths and I urge all road users in Northern Ireland to commit to sharing the road to zero."

Road to Zero is a safety campaign launched by the government in April 2013 that aims to portray the human sorrow behind road deaths by showing the impact on the families left behind.

The minister said that, subject to executive approval, a Road Traffic Amendment Bill would be introduced in 2014 to take further steps to tackle those who choose to drink and drive.

It would also seek to address the high numbers of young people killed on the roads.

Supt Moore said: "If everyone slowed down, did not drive after drinking or taking drugs, wore a seatbelt and drove with greater care and attention, then more people would live. It really is that simple."

The latest statistics show that 24 people who died in car accidents last year were driving.

Twelve of those killed were passengers; 10 were motorcyclists; seven were pedestrians and three were cyclists.

Two children died on Northern Ireland's roads last year, compared with five in 2012.

A total of 14,626 people have lost their lives on NI roads since records began in 1931 and 75,070 have suffered serious injuries since these were first recorded in 1971.

In 1931, there were 114 road deaths. This number increased over the years and peaked in 1972 with 372 deaths.

In 2012, road fatalities were the lowest on record.

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