Adopting a zero tolerance to injuries and deaths on Chichester’s roads

City councillor Sarah Sharp, who was seriously injured while cycling in the centre of Chichester, is leading the Vision Zero aim

City councillor Sarah Sharp, who was seriously injured while cycling in the centre of Chichester, is leading the Vision Zero aim

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The drive to reduce the number of people killed or seriously injured on roads in and around Chichester is gathering pace.

On Monday evening, Chichester’s City Council’s Community Affairs Committee found out more about Vision Zero – a new road safety campaign which launched nationally in January.

Green city councillor, Sarah Sharp, gave a presentation and answered questions from fellow councillors.

Cllr Sharp is still recovering from a serious accident close to the city centre last year, and argued that ‘health and safety at work accepts a zero tolerance towards accidents so, similarly, we as a society should strive to eliminate as far as possible death and injury on our roads’.

Cllr Sharp said: “The road system should be designed to reduce the risks from human error instead of being engineered principally for fast through movement of vehicles.”

Nearly 500 people are killed or seriously injured on roads in West Sussex every year, Cllr Sharp said.

City councillor Tony Dignum, who is also leader of Chichester District Council, welcomed the presentation, saying that the CIL Monies from the White House Farm development which are due to amount to many millions, should be spent wisely on proper, protected infrastructure to keep pedestrians and cyclists safe.

Cllr Sharp will shortly be launching the Chichester branch of Vision Zero to continue to put pressure West Sussex County Council, who will shortly be reviewing the West Sussex Road Safety Framework.

The Framework does include the term ‘Vision Zero’, but cllr Sharp argued that this has to be backed up by real and new policies to bring about a greater shared responsibility between the road authority, the police and the driver for reducing fatalities and injuries.

She is calling on speed limits throught the county to be properly enforced, especially 20mph limits in built-up residential areas.

“A key element of the vision is that we are all human and will make mistakes but our road system has to make sure that these mistakes don’t end up being fatal,” she said.

“Our road system should be designed to protect us at every turn.”

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