West Midlands Mayor Andy Street reacts to spike in road deaths in Birmingham

Five people including two children have been killed in separate collisions in Birmingham in recent weeks
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A crackdown to curb bad driving is needed in Birmingham following a spate of deaths involving pedestrians and cyclists, Mayor Andy Street has said.

Mr Street was responding to calls for action at a residents meeting in Moseley last Tuesday  (June 27). At that time, four people, including two children, had been killed in four separate collisions within the space of a month. They were all either pedestrians or cyclists.

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One of the children was a 12 -year-old boy who was struck by a car while using a pedestrian crossing on Coventry Road on June 8. Since then another pedestrian has been killed on our roads - a man was struck by a car in a hit and run collision in Washwood Heath Road at 2am on Saturday (July 1). He was confirmed dead by paramedics at the scene just before 3am.

At the meeting held at The Moseley Exchange, a member of the audience addressed Mr Street, saying: “You’ve got this massive budget. Nothing’s happening in Birmingham or it’s taking a long time to happen. How are we going to speed this up? What can you do?”

The mayor responded: “The general situation that we’ve had in the last few weeks of people losing their lives, including a young child on a pedestrian crossing on the Coventry road, that isn’t about infrastructure when you tell that story.

“The boy was using a very clear pedestrian crossing – that is about the standards of driving in the city. So the first thing we have to do is actually be much, much tougher on that.”

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Mr Street explained he had met with West Midlands Chief Constable Craig Guilford and they will be making an announcement at a summit shortly, alongside Walking and Cycling Commissioner Adam Tranter. He indicated this would include how the police plan to resource and enforce safer driving.

West Midlands Mayor Andy StreetWest Midlands Mayor Andy Street
West Midlands Mayor Andy Street

The mayor continued: “The second issue is obviously the capital to build the infrastructure. You are right, we do not have a shortage of that. The third issue then is getting the infrastructure built quickly and we have a very significant issue there. And frankly, it’s a nationwide issue with all local authorities having a real challenge around that.

“Now, we have a very live conversation with Birmingham [City Council] at the moment and frankly, you might have the transport cabinet lead for Birmingham [Liz Clements] along because that is what they have to contribute to because the money is there for routes, but the issue is the ability to get that money spent quickly.”

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