THE number of people who died in road accidents in Argyll and Bute doubled in 2018, despite a drop in the total number of crashes involving fatalities or serious injuries.

Statistics released this week by Transport Scotland revealed that eight people died as a result of accidents on Argyll and Bute’s roads last year, compared to four in 2017.

According to the data, there were a total of 156 reported accidents in Argyll and Bute last year, around a 10 per cent decrease on the 2017 figure of 174.

Meanwhile, there were 207 reported casualties in the area last year, almost one fifth fewer than the 2017 total of 250.

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On a national level, 160 people died in reported accidents on Scotland’s roads in 2018 – an increase of 15 on the previous year.

The figures also show that in 2018 there were 756 child casualties in reported road accidents nationwide, a decrease of 16 per cent since 2017.

This included three fatalities, one more than 2017, and 142 children who were seriously injured, down from 152 in 2017.

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In 2018 there were six pedal cyclists killed, one more than in 2017, and five fewer pedestrian fatalities.

There were four more motorcyclists killed and 11 more car user fatalities.

Stuart Hay, director of Living Streets Scotland, said: "We support a vision of zero deaths on the roads; to ensure road safety continues as a priority.

"This means challenging the car dominance in our towns and cities; so streets are safe for everyone."