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Last Updated: Monday, 15 August 2005, 07:31 GMT 08:31 UK
Young drivers causing 'bloodbath'
Parents must do more to stem a "bloodbath" on the roads of Cumbria involving young drivers, experts say.

The call, by Cumbria Safety Cameras (CSC), comes as new figures show that almost 50% of fatal road accidents in the county involve drivers aged 16-25.

CSC, which manages Cumbria's roadside cameras, said between 1 August 2004 and 31 July this year, young drivers were involved in 22 fatal collisions.

The organisation says parents must ensure youngsters drive appropriately.

The new figures reveal that the Allerdale area suffered the worst accident record, with eight fatalities and 21 serious injury collisions.

Carlisle saw seven fatal and 20 serious injury collisions. Elsewhere in the county there were a further seven deaths and 60 serious injury collisions.

'Reduce carnage'

The figures show that 16 to 20-year-old drivers were involved in 11 fatal, 56 serious and 338 slight injury collisions. Older drivers between the ages of 21-25 were implicated in 11 fatal, 45 serious and 253 slight injury collisions.

CSC communications manager Kevin Tea said: "To call this state of affairs a bloodbath may seem to be overly dramatic, but the figures speak for themselves.

"We are witnesses a totally unacceptable level of fatalities and serious injury accidents among young drivers and passengers.

"There is only so much that the police and ourselves can achieve and we must start to look at how other influences can be brought into play to reduce this carnage.

"Passengers have the right to request the driver to drive in an appropriate manner.

"Parents, too, must accept more responsibility to ensure their children drive in a socially acceptable way.

"It has to be better to have a showdown than to have to organise and attend the funeral of their kids and their friends."

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