Make Motoring Safer
Australia's peak motoring organisation, the Australian Automobile Association, has called on all political parties to make motoring safer for all road users.
The AAA and its constituent motoring clubs – NRMA Motoring and Services, RACV, RACQ, RAASA, RACWA, RACT and AANT – said the next Federal Government needed to build safety into vehicles and, importantly, into the Australian road network.
AAA Chief Executive, Mike Harris, said safety rating programs such as the Australian Road Assessment Program (AusRAP) and the Australasian New Car Assessment Program (ANCAP) have proven to make a difference and should be supported.
Mr Harris made the call for a renewed focus on road safety when commenting on AAA's Federal election policy, Motoring Matters for Every Australian.
"Some 1500 people die every year and thousands are seriously injured as a result of road crashes, at a cost to the Australian economy of $17.85 billion each year – we are calling on the Federal Government to make road safety a priority in the next term.
"Programs such as AusRAP, which provides a star safety rating for road sections, ANCAP, which provides a star rating for new vehicles, and keys2drive, which provides an innovative approach to learner driver training, are highly successful.
"The Government needs to ensure such safety-focussed programs are a part of the upcoming National Road Safety Strategy for 2011 to 2020. We also urge the Government to adopt a zero death safety target, with the next NRSS to put forward programs towards this objective.
"We are pleased the previous Federal Government supported ANCAP and keys2drive, but support for AusRAP would help identify and provide solutions for dangerous and unsafe sections of road.
"The Commonwealth also needs to develop a cross-jurisdictional and cross-departmental approach to road safety – there are many factors involved and there needs to be greater collaboration to tackle this high fatality and injury rate.
AAA's Motoring Matters for Every Australian election policy – which also includes actions to make motoring safer and also sustainable – can be viewed at www.aaa.asn.au and follow the links.