Accidents or Collisions

The word 'accident' is used throughout this website to describe a collision between any road users. A collision could be between two cars, or a car and a cyclist, for example.

Many experts in road safety discourage using the word 'accident' because it suggests the collision occurred as some random act of fate which could not be prevented. Instead, it is argued the word 'collision' should be used, as this factually describes what happened without implication.

Despite this, the Traffic Choices website continues to use the word 'accident' because it is well understood within the general public. We believe the best way to disseminate information about traffic schemes and keep things interesting is to use informal, plain language.

So, to keep the content clear, the word 'collision' is not used on Traffic Choices.

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Evans, L. (1993) Medical accidents: no such thing? British Medical Journal 307 pp. 1438 - 1439