Damning road safety report mustn’t be ignored: RACQ

10 September 2018 The State’s peak motoring body has called for drastic action to drive down Australia’s shocking road toll after a national inquiry revealed our road safety performance had hit the brakes, costing not only lives, but more than $30 billion to the economy.

RACQ Head of Technical and Safety Policy Steve Spalding said the inquiry into the National Road Safety Strategy (NRSS) had revealed Australia suffered from flaws in accountability, funding, and technology that had directly impacted the rate of road deaths.

“In Queensland, we’ve lost more lives in road crashes already this year than in 2017 so these recommendations from the National Road Safety Strategy can’t come any sooner,” Mr Spalding said.

“We’ve joined the Australian Automobile Association in calling for action because every day these findings sit on a desk ignored – lives are at risk on our roads.”

Mr Spalding said amongst the 12 recommendations was the appointment of a Federal cabinet minister who would focus on the hidden epidemic of road trauma which was expected to cost the economy a staggering $300 billion by 2030.

“We’ve long campaigned for strong leadership on road safety and appointing a cabinet minister with specific oversight across multiple agencies will see a co-ordinated approach to saving lives,” he said.

“The inquiry found failing to act will result in thousands more killed and injured every year – and while the human cost is obviously tragic, it’s also a cost to the economy.”

Mr Spalding welcomed the inquiry’s recommendation for the establishment of a $3 billion road safety fund.

“State and local roads continue to be overlooked for funding despite RACQ’s consistent calls for mass action safety upgrades we’ve identified through AusRAP,” he said.

“Every Queenslander, no matter where they live, deserves access to safe roads and the only way to do this is to adopt these recommendations at a Federal, State and even local level.”