RSA today announces a new charity partnership with the Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents (RoSPA). The two organisations are collaborating on a number of initiatives to highlight risks and to help reduce the number of people who are seriously injured or killed in accidents at home or on the road.

Every year, more than 14,000 people in the UK are killed following accidents, with hundreds of thousands more injured – but many of these accidents are preventable. Through this long-term partnership,  RSA and RoSPA are focusing on accident prevention and on raising awareness of the things people can do to look after themselves and others. Three main accident groups will be addressed: those affecting under-fives in the home, 17-25 year olds on the road, and over 65s on the road and at home.

The programme will evolve across three key stages:

  • research and analysis to understand the main causes of accidents and who they affect
  • use insights to build awareness and highlight simple steps to reduce the risks
  • advocate wider systemic changes where appropriate to improve safety for all

Initial research* has found that almost half of us (48%) have experienced a serious accident or know someone who has. In addition, two in five of us (43%) have experienced anxiety or stress as a result of an accident involving close friends or family. Furthermore, a third of the UK workforce has had to take time off work to accommodate caring responsibilities such as accompanying children or a relative to medical appointments as a result of an accident.

Over 65s account for half of all accident-related hospital admissions – with the number of people being admitted up 11% since 2015 for this age group. Among over 65s, falls are the largest single cause of admissions and accidental deaths, so the first output from the partnership will be a series of virtual roadshows and online support material to help those approaching later life to improve their strength and balance – both of which are key defences to limiting falls at home.

Available from the end of November, these online support packages are designed to give over 65s clear and simple things they can do to live more safely and actively. Research also found that almost half of us (45%) don’t feel comfortable talking to older friends and relatives about the risks they face, so there will also be guidance to help everyone else find ways to raise safety concerns.