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Media release

AAA welcomes commonsense data transparency commitment


The Albanese Government’s pledge to extract previously secret data about road trauma from state governments is the most significant national road safety reform in decades.

Australia’s peak motoring body says the Albanese Government’s move to extract previously secret data about road trauma from state governments is the most significant national road safety reform in decades.

The AAA commends Transport Minister Catherine King’s move to enshrine road safety data reporting requirements in the Government’s next five-year road funding deal with states and territories, as the information produced will reveal why our nation’s road toll is rising by almost 10 per cent a year.

AAA Managing Director Michael Bradley congratulated Minister King and called on state and territory governments to follow the recent lead of the Queensland Government to commit to data transparency ahead of the finalisation of the funding deal, which is due to take effect from 1 July.

“With more than 100 people killed on Australian roads each month and the toll rising, we need data about the causes of crashes, the condition of roads and the effectiveness of traffic policing to better understand what is going wrong,’’ Mr Bradley said.

“Such data exists, but for too long it has been held by states and territories, rather than being made public and used to create more effective responses to our worsening road safety problems.

“This reform will also clip the wings of politicians who are tempted to invest scarce public money on road projects to win votes in marginal electorates, rather than projects that can save lives.’’

Ms King’s decision follows the AAA’s Data Saves Lives campaign, which garnered the support of 17 national medical and transport safety-focused groups, and mobilised thousands of concerned Australians to demand their local MP support data transparency. The campaign saw all federal MPs from the Coalition, the Greens, and the Teals – as well as independents, including Bob Katter and ACT Senator David Pocock – throw their weight behind the commonsense call for transparency and evidence-based policymaking.”

Mr Bradley said: “The AAA is very pleased the Government has listened to Australian motorists.

“The AAA also commends Labor MP Dr Mike Freelander for his leadership on this issue and his support for responses that will save lives across the country.’’

Mr Bradley said the AAA looks forward to seeing the final details of the inter-governmental agreement, and it encourages state and territory governments to follow the lead of Queensland Transport Minister Bart Mellish, who on 19 April agreed to share Queensland road safety data.

Mr Bradley said: “We encourage other states to follow Queensland’s lead, as this is an opportunity to deliver a simple reform and practical action that will literally save lives.”

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