Police chase deaths highest since 2009

26th July 2017

Police chase deaths highest since 2009

More people died as a result of accidents caused during high-speed police pursuits in the past financial year compared to the same period prior, according to figures from the Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC).

There were 32 road traffic fatalities in England and Wales, the IPCC’s 2016/17 report shows, which represents an 11 per cent rise on the previous year. It is also the highest figure recorded in eight years.

The IPCC’s report reveals that there were 28 road traffic incidents related to police pursuits, more than double the figure for last year and the highest for 11 years.

A spokesperson for road safety charity Brake said the sharp increase in pursuit-related deaths was “deeply worrying and underlines the fact that police chases, often at excessive speed, are incredibly dangerous”.

They added that one major concern was that none of these deaths were in response to emergencies and that two-thirds of the people who died were passengers (12), bystanders or other road users.

“It simply cannot be worth risking innocent lives by engaging in perilous chases when trying to secure an arrest,” the spokesperson concluded.

“The National Police Chiefs' Council (NPCC) must urgently review pursuit procedures in light of these very troubling figures.”

Molly Benton, brand manager at Fuel Card Services, added: “Such a quick increase is deeply worrying but these numbers are prone to fluctuation. We are confident the police will take any relevant measures to limit fatalities.”