POLICE are appealing to drivers to 'think for a second' after the number of people killed in crashes on West Yorkshire's road went up by 74 per cent compared to last year.

From January to the end of June, 47 people were killed in 43 crashes across the county, including a significant number in the Bradford district, which a road safety charity described as “deeply concerning”.

This compares to 27 deaths in 27 crashes over the same time period in 2017.

The number now stands over 50, following the Toller Lane crash earlier this month in which four men died.

This spike in fatalities has caused West Yorkshire Police to appeal to drivers to think about the manner of their driving.

Officers from the Major Collision and Enquiry Team are calling on drivers to consider the manner of their driving and whether of not they should be behind the wheel.

Detective Chief Inspector Jim Griffiths, who is in charge of the MCET, said: “One of the hardest jobs a police officer has to do is to visit relatives and tell them a loved one has died.

“It is that much harder for relatives to deal with when that death could have been easily prevented.

"So if you have to tell a mother that her son has died because a driver was too tired and lost his concentration it makes it that bit more difficult to deal with.

“The point of this video is to ask people to stop and think about their driving or that of their loved ones.

“Sometimes we release hard-hitting messages which very much have their place but Fiona and Ann – the two sergeants at MCET have deliberately chosen to have a conversation with people to ask them to stop and think.

“The messages are very straight-forward but might be about subjects people haven’t previously thought about – can that hay fever medicine you are taking make you drowsy?

"If so, should you be driving? A split second error of judgement could have fatal consequences.

“We MOT our cars but do we check ourselves? Or are you fit to drive but a loved one not?

"It’s about having that conversation with them – it might be difficult – but it’s a lot better than having to deal with the potential consequences.

“Driving is a privilege, not a right. Don’t become blasé about it – you might drive the same route twice every day on your way to and from work and think you know every little twist and turn – but that can lead to over confidence – and that is when accidents can happen.

“My message to all motorists is to ask everyone to stop and think for a second about your driving – if this message helps to stop one road death it has been successful.”

Since the turn of the year, a number of people have been killed on Bradford’s roads.

On February 9, a 22-year-old man died after crashing into a house in Queensbury while trying to evade police.

On February 24, a 68-year-old woman was killed after her car was hit by another vehicle which fled the scene.

On April 2, two men were killed on the M62 near Junction 26 for Chain Bar after being involved in a head-on collision with a car being driven the wrong way along the motorway in the early hours by a man who failed a roadside breath test.

Former Bradford City team doctor Vince Cavaliere also died as a result of a crash, being hit by a Land Rover while cycling in Ilkley on June 22.

While not included in the figures, four men also died in the Toller Lane crash earlier this month after hitting a tree at speed following a 34-second chase by police.

A spokesperson for Brake, the road safety charity, said: “It is deeply concerning to see this drastic rise in the number of road deaths in West Yorkshire.

“Road crashes are preventable tragedies - each death or injury on the road is one too many.

“Brake calls for the government to introduce a range of measures to drive down road casualties, including a zero-tolerance approach to drink driving, lower default speed limits and graduated driver licensing.

“It is also crucial that investment in roads policing is prioritised and increased, to ensure that dangerous, illegal drivers know they will be caught and punished.”