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M5: Accidents

Question for Department for Transport

UIN 68344, tabled on 2 July 2020

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what comparative assessment he has made of the frequency of serious accidents that close at least one lane in both directions from Junction 6 to Junction 4a of the M5 (i) before and (ii) since the M5 smart motorway was introduced.

Answered on

9 July 2020

The J4a-6 M5 smart motorway scheme started construction in January 2016 and was opened for traffic in May 2017. The table below contains the number of reported traffic collisions reported by Highways England for this stretch of road, where a lane closure has been implemented:

Calendar Year

No. of recorded Traffic Collisions with a lane closure

2015

97

2016

93

2017

121

2018

207

2019

136

The Department’s review of the safety of Smart Motorways across England, published in March 2020, showed that overall, the evidence shows that in most ways, smart motorways are as safe as, or safer than, the conventional ones. But not in every way. To ensure we are doing all we can do to improve safety, a package of 18 measures were published in March. This will allow us to retain the benefits of smart motorways while addressing the concerns that have been identified.