Pedestrian fatalities soar in Queensland

RACQ has issued a warning to motorists to be extra vigilant when driving, after the number of pedestrian fatalities on Queensland’s roads increased by more than 125 percent compared to last year.

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Department of Transport and Main Roads data revealed 18 pedestrians had been killed so far this year compared to eight at the same time in 2019.

RACQ spokesperson Lauren Ritchie said it was incredibly concerning the number of fatalities had more than doubled, especially given the reduction in traffic due to COVID-19 restrictions.

“While 18 might not seem like a huge number to some, we must remember we’re talking about lives here. That’s 18 families that have had to deal with the tragic and unexpected loss of a loved one,” Ms Ritchie said.

“They’re vulnerable users, and in the event of a crash, pedestrians always end up second best as they have very little protection from injury.

“It’s also up to people on foot to make sure they’re crossing the road safely, at the right time and the right location so they’re not putting themselves in a dangerous situation.”

Ms Ritchie said the number of cyclists who had been killed in crashes on Queensland roads had also doubled this year.

“Four cyclists have died so far in 2020, compared to two at the same time last year,” she said.

“It’s the highest toll we’ve seen at this time of the year since 2016. We all need to do better when it comes to protecting the lives of cyclists.

“When the speed limit is 60km/h or less, you must leave a gap of at least one metre when passing a cyclist and only go around when it’s safe to do so. When the speed limit is over 60km/h, the gap must be at least one and a half metres.

“Practicing some patience could save someone’s life.”