HUNDREDS of people were either killed or seriously injured on Lancashire’s roads last year, with the number of lethal accidents in one town increasing.

In 2019, 932 people were involved in serious accidents on the county’s roads, with 116 of those taking place on roads in and around Blackburn with Darwen – where a rise has been recorded in dangerous road collisions.

In total, 44 individuals tragically lost their lives on Lancashire's road network.

The figures have prompted leading road-safety charity Brake to call on the Government to strengthen roads policing, following what it described as a decade of ‘appalling stagnation’ in the number of fatalities on the country’s roads.

And while there was a two per cent rise in people being seriously injured or killed in accidents across Blackburn, there was an 18 per cent decrease on Burnley, Rossendale, Hyndburn. Pendle and Ribble Valley roads, with Lancashire County Council’s carriageways seeing fewer incidents than in 2018.

The figures represent all accidents that happened on a public road and involved at least one vehicle, horse rider or cyclist.

Joshua Harris, director of campaigns at Brake, said: “For nearly a decade now, we have seen an appalling stagnation in the number of deaths on our roads and it’s high-time for the Government to take responsibility and act.

"We need to rid our roads of dangerous drink and drug driving, introduce safe speeds in our towns, cities and rural areas and reinvigorate roads policing, which has been decimated by funding cuts."

Earlier this year, road bosses said they were making more improvements to a notorious stretch of road which has seen many fatal and serious crashes.

The news came following an inquest into the death of Megan Byrne at which coroner James Newman concluded bad weather and faulty tyres contributed to the crash that killed the 22-year-old, who had been driving on the Grane Road.

Another dangerous stretch of road, the A59, has long been a cause for concern among councillors and MPs, with regular calls for an overhaul to safety precautions.

Across Britain, 29,588 people were killed or seriously injured last year – a slight decrease on the year before.

The number of fatalities also dropped slightly to 1,748, but Brake said the annual total has 'flatlined since 2012' when 1,754 people were killed.

The DfT warns against comparing year-on-year figures however due to changes in 2016 to the way some forces record the severity of injuries.

The Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents said it has expressed concern about the lack of progress in reducing deaths and serious injuries on the roads for a number of years.

Nick Lloyd, head of road safety at the organisation, added: “However, we are pleased that the Government is now recognising the importance of roads policing and has issued a consultation on this."

The Government is carrying out a review of roads policing across England and Wales, stating there can be "no room for complacency" after a plateauing in the number of deaths and serious injuries following years of steady decline.

In Blackburn with Darwen, the total number of casualties, which includes non-serious injuries, fell from 656 to 449 between 2009 and 2019.

Across Britain, the number of casualties fell to 153,315 last year, the lowest since comparable records began in 1979 – mainly driven by a fall in non-serious injuries.

A DfT spokesman said the figures were encouraging, adding: “We continue to work hard to improve road safety – delivering on more than 70 actions announced last year in the Road Safety Statement to tackle road safety issues for people, throughout their lifetime.

“Our award-winning THINK! Campaign is also continuing to tackle the attitudes and behaviours that can lead to road casualties.”