Page last updated at 04:06 GMT, Monday, 21 July 2008 05:06 UK

Police road traffic deaths halved

Police vehicle
The IPCC says officers should pursue drivers only after a serious crime

Deaths from road accidents involving police in England and Wales have fallen by more than half in two years to 23, figures are expected to show.

But Nick Hardwick, who chairs the Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC), said the figure was still "too high".

In 12 months to the end of March 2008, there were 17 fatal crashes involving police, according to IPCC statistics.

The figures are the lowest since the IPCC began compiling them in 2004.

BBC home affairs correspondent Danny Shaw said the drop may be linked to tougher guidance and training on police pursuits, when most of the road deaths occur.

Last year, the IPCC said officers should pursue drivers only when a serious crime had been committed.

Mr Hardwick said the latest figures must not divert attention away from police road traffic incidents which he said rightly caused "very significant public concern".

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10 Mar 08 |  Scotland
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