1.1 The STATS20 manual provides a detailed explanation of the information, referred to as STATS19, which is the set of data which has to be collected by a Police Officer when an injury road accident is reported to them.
1.2 This is the 2005 edition of STATS20 and incorporates amendments arising from the 2002 Quinquennial Review of Road Accident Data, as approved by the Standing Committee on Road Accident Statistics (SCRAS). SCRAS comprises representatives from the Department for Transport (DfT), police forces, local authority associations and other Government departments with an interest in the collation of road accident data.
1.3 The STATS19 reports are analysed nationally by reference to a great variety of characteristics and attendant circumstances and the results are used extensively for research work and for guidance in the improvement of road safety in relation to roads, road users, vehicles and traffic movement. The data also form the basis for annual statistics on road accidents and casualties published by DfT, the Scottish Executive (SE) and the National Assembly for Wales (NAfW). Local authorities also publish similar statistics.
1.4 Local authorities also make extensive use of road accident data. Engineers use it extensively for establishing priority sites for remedial measures and previous experience has shown that even low cost measures can be extremely effective in reducing or eliminating accidents at particular sites.
1.5 Road safety officers also gain much of their evidence on which to base national and local educational programmes and training from the data which accrue from local road accident statistics.
1.6 The police, who collect these data, also use them as a guide to the operational tactical deployment of their patrols in order to fulfil one of their primary roles, the reduction of casualties.
1.7 The accumulated data, over long periods of time, is also used by a range of establishments for research into road safety measures.
1.8 It is because of the many various uses to which this data is put that the need for accuracy and prompt return is paramount. The speedy return of accurate data will not only be of value to those bodies noted above but will also do much to enhance the early publication of Departmental accident and casualty statistics, which are of great use to those working in the field of accident prevention and road safety education.
1.9 A separate document, STATS21, describes:
(a) The validity checks and error procedures to be carried out locally on STATS19 data;
(b) The procedures for writing and submitting data to DfT/SE/NAfW;
(c) The specification of media formats in which the data can be submitted to DfT, SE or NAfW;
(d) The procedures for dealing with rejections or queries of data received by DfT/SE/NAfW.
1.10 By "Reported" it is meant that STATS19 data for the injury accident has to be collected by the Police Force concerned and then passed on to DfT/SE/NafW and local highway authority in the agreed format.
2. ACCIDENTS TO BE REPORTED
2.1 All road accidents involving human death or personal injury occurring on the Highway ('road' in Scotland) and notified to the police within 30 days of occurrence, and in which one or more vehicles are involved, are to be reported. This is a wider definition of road accidents than that used in Road Traffic Acts.
2.2 Examples of accidents to be reported include:
(a) accidents which commence on the highway but which involve casualties off the highway (eg. where a vehicle runs out of control while on the highway and causes casualties elsewhere);
(b) accidents involving the boarding and alighting of buses or coaches and accidents in which passengers already aboard a bus/coach are injured, whether or not another vehicle or a pedestrian is involved;
(c) accidents to pedal cyclists or horse riders, where they injure themselves or a pedestrian;
(d) accidents resulting from deliberate acts of violence, but excluding casualties who are subsequently identified as confirmed suicides;
(e) accidents within bus stations/interchanges where they form part of the highway;
(f) accidents in Royal Parks (on roads to which the public have motor vehicle access)
2.3 Examples of accidents which should not be reported include:
(a) accidents which do not involve personal injury;
(b) accidents on private roads (except Royal Parks) or in car parks;
(c) accidents reported to the police 30 or more days after they occurred;
(d) accidents involving confirmed suicides only.
A. The Road Traffic Act 1988 (section 170), as amended by Section 72 of the 1991 Act, stipulates that all fatal or injury accidents on public roads involving at least one mechanically propelled vehicle should be reported by the public to the police unless insurance documents, name and address, and details of vehicle ownership and registration are exchanged between drivers. This legislation defines the duty of the public to report a personal injury road accident.
B. In the past the interpretation of "mechanically propelled vehicle" has varied widely between local police forces, particularly about whether pedal cycle accidents, not involving a motor vehicle, should be reported.
The STATS19 requirement is clear that all accidents involving non-motor vehicles such as pedal cycles and ridden horses on 'public roads' (see 2.4) should be reported, regardless of motor vehicle or pedestrian involvement.
See Note K on page 45 for other examples of non-motor vehicles. Also, Note C on page 71 contains examples which should not be treated as vehicles.