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First increase in road deaths since 2003

Department for Transport report increase in UK road deaths,

Figures released by the Department for Transport have shown the first increase in annual road deaths since 2003 with 1,901 dying due to reported road accidents in 2011 compared with 1,850 in 2010 a 3% increase. Serious injuries also rose by 2% from 22,660 to 23,122.

Although deaths actually reduced for pedal cyclists and motorcycle users, these groups saw the worst rises in serious injuries. In fact injuries to pedal cyclists have increased year on year from 2007 with last years figures being 17% higher than the 2005-2009 average.

While some comfort can be taken from the fact that, taking all road users, last years figures are actually the 2nd best on record only beaten by 2010, the rises have led to calls for stronger leadership from the government to act on the rising figures.

According to EuroRAP the European Road Assessment Programme, Great Britain has the safest motorways and dual carriageways in Europe, worth bearing in mind if you're driving on the continent this summer.

If you are considering holiday car rental it could be worth taking out car hire excess insurance. This typically covers any excess that motorists would have to pay should their rented vehicle become damaged.