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Why safe matters

The story of road trauma in Australia is often told in numbers and percentages. But behind the statistics, there are real people.

People who have died. People who are suffering real loss. People living with real injuries.

We’ve all been involved in close calls and near-misses on our roads.

We don’t want you or one of your friends or family to be the next road trauma statistic.

The Inquiry into the National Road Safety Strategy has presented the Federal Government with a comprehensive plan to bring down our road toll.

The Government can and must act to reduce deaths and injuries on our roads.

If you have real concerns about road safety in your area, please tell your local MP that safe matters to you, using the form below.

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Dear Name,

My name is Your Name and I live in the electorate of Electorate.

I want you to know that road safety matters to me.

Sincerely,
Your Name

Please enter your suburb and postcode above
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No one is directly accountable for making Australia’s roads safe.

The recent Inquiry into the National Road Safety Strategy found a lack of Federal Government leadership is a key reason for our stalled progress.

On 12 September, the Inquiry into the National Road Safety Strategy released its final report.

The Inquiry says the Federal Government must show national leadership in curbing our road toll.

Its report included 12 recommendations to reduce road trauma.

One of the most important jobs for Government is keeping Australians safe.

The Inquiry has given the Government a plan, but we are still waiting for a detailed response.

It’s time our politicians stepped up to coordinate a systematic national approach to road safety.

Recent stories reminding us why safe matters

Hospitalised injuries

Since Inquiry reported on 12 September*

Every year, thousands of Australians are admitted to hospital because of road crashes. Often these are life-changing injuries, such as paralysis, brain injuries, amputations or loss of sight.

38, 148 people were treated in Australian hospitals for road-related injuries in the 2015-16 financial year. This equates to 3,179 people a month, 105 a day or more than 4 an hour.

*based on average injuries for July 2015 – June 2016. Actual injuries may vary.

Fatalities

Since Inquiry reported on 12 September*

There were 1,222 deaths on Australian roads in 2017-18 (only one fewer than 2016-17).

The AAA’s quarterly Benchmarking of The National Road Safety Strategy shows that for the first time all states and the NT are on track to miss targets all governments agreed to in 2011. The ACT is the only state or territory set to meet its agreed 2020 road death reduction target.

*based on average fatalities for July 2017 – June 2018. Actual fatalities may vary.

Cost of road trauma

Since Inquiry reported on 12 September

The social cost of road deaths is both obvious and immeasurable, but the economic implications of Australia’s road safety crisis can be quantified.

Research commissioned by the AAA has measured the economic Cost of Road Trauma in Australia. Loss of life and well-being, vehicle damage, disability care and other impacts imposed a $29.7 billion blow to the national economy in 2015.

Inquiry into the National Road Safety Strategy

It has been clear for several years that the National Road Safety Strategy (NRSS) 2011 – 2020 was not on track to meet its targets. On 8 September 2017, the Federal Government announced an inquiry into the NRSS.

The Inquiry’s final report was delivered on 12 September 2018.

Several of the Inquiry’s recommendations focused on stronger federal government engagement and leadership in road safety. These included calls for better resourcing; appointing a Cabinet minister with multi-agency responsibility to address road trauma; and re-establishing a national road safety entity reporting to that minister.

On the 5 October 2018 the Government responded to the inquiry, in part, by announcing a national road safety governance review – an important first step.  The AAA urges the government to urgently implement the Inquiry’s other recommendations. Lives are being lost as we wait for action.

See the full NRSS Inquiry report.

INQUIRY INTO THE NATIONAL ROAD SAFETY STRATEGY 2011-2020 RECOMMENDATIONS

  1. Create strong national leadership by appointing a Cabinet minister with specific multi-agency responsibility to address the hidden epidemic of road trauma.
  2. Establish a national road safety entity reporting to the Cabinet minister with responsibility for road safety.
  3. Commit to a minimum $3 billion a year road safety fund.
  4. Set a vision zero target for 2050 with an interim target of vision zero for all major capital city CBD areas, and high-volume highways by 2030.
  5. Establish and commit to key performance indicators by June 2019 that measure and report how harm can be eliminated in the system, and that are published annually.
  6. Undertake a National Road Safety Governance Review by March 2019.
  7. Implement rapid deployment and accelerated uptake of proven vehicle safety technologies and innovation.
  8. Accelerate the adoption of speed management initiatives that support harm elimination.
  9. Invest in road safety focused infrastructure, safe system and mobility partnerships with state, territory and local governments that accelerate the elimination of high-risk roads.
  10. Make road safety a genuine part of business as usual within Commonwealth, state, territory and local government.
  11. Resource key road safety enablers and road safety innovation initiatives.
  12. Implement life-saving partnerships with countries in the Indo-Pacific and globally as appropriate to reduce road trauma.