The fatal four

22 May 2024

The ‘fatal four’ refers to the leading causes of death and serious injury in road traffic collisions. Not just in the UK but worldwide. These are: not wearing seatbelts; speeding/driving too fast for the conditions; using mobile phones/devices at the wheel; and driving when impaired through alcohol/drugs.

All of the fatal four are in the control of the driver and within their daily decision-making. Regular and effective communication and education plays a crucial role in addressing these factors.

This month’s fatal four toolbox talk raises the profile of the most deadly contributory causes of road traffic collisions and covers:

  • The seatbelt, and how it is the most basic safety feature on a vehicle saving 50% of drivers and passengers from serious or fatal injury
  • The impact of speed and how a few miles per hour can mean the difference between life and death
  • How using a mobile device at the wheel means drivers are affected by the full range of distractions
  • How alcohol or drugs affect impairment, unpredictability, and the ability to work and drive safely

The impact of the fatal four cannot be underestimated, they represent the most significant risk to drivers, passengers and other road users. Raising awareness of these risks and ensuring drivers take positive action will be a step towards improving road safety.