Journeys June/July 2021

Page 10


Changing gears

Where to next for

REDUCING TASMANIA’S ROAD TRAUMA requires a unified approach by governments, organisations and the community. It’s a journey we must all take together, writes Alex Luttrell.

road safety?


ver the past decade we have failed to reduce death and serious injury on our roads. Even in a pandemic we had a disastrous 2020, with 36 fatalities and 284 serious injuries. At 6.6 deaths per 100,000 people, Tasmania had the worst road safety record of any Australian state in 2020. If this trend continues, 175 Tasmanians will die and 1500 will be seriously injured on our roads in the next five years. Yet, if Tasmania matched the death rate of the best performing state, Victoria (3.17), 19 lives could have been saved last year. Sadly, that looks a tough task in 2021 with fatal and serious injuries continuing. There have already been 10* deaths and 103* serious injuries here this year, forever changing the lives of many families and friends. However, we know what works to protect Tasmanians on the road. It’s about building safer roads to prevent human error, encouraging Tasmanians to buy safer cars, introducing the latest enforcement technology, making road safety a whole-ofgovernment responsibility, as well as changing the attitudes and behaviours of Tasmanians through better education and training.



Police stats

Tasmania Police statistics from 2019-2020* show that many motorists are still breaking the rules, putting themselves and others at risk. The following offences occurred despite the COVID-19 lockdown:

36,719 2657 2070 1638 1542 Speeding offenders

Drug driving offenders

Mobile phone offenders

Non-use of seat belts

Drink driving offenders

*Figures accurate as of 7 May

*From Department of Police, Fire and Emergency Management Annual Report 2019-2020

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