Drunk walking killing pedestrians

The State’s peak motoring body has urged Queenslanders to take extra care when out drinking after it was revealed dozens of people had been killed in traffic crashes involving drunk pedestrians.

Data obtained by RACQ from the Queensland Police Service showed 63 pedestrians who were impaired by alcohol were killed in crashes between 2012 and 2017.

RACQ’s Head of Technical and Safety Policy Steve Spalding said walking home after a few drinks was not always the safest option and urged people to think about their actions this weekend.

“In five years, 160 pedestrians were hit and killed by cars, and to learn more than one third of those pedestrians had alcohol in their system is truly saddening,” Mr Spalding said.

“Many people think walking instead of driving will see them safely home, but the reality is, it’s still dangerous.”

Mr Spalding said a pedestrian’s judgement, balance and coordination could be impaired and it worsened the higher their blood alcohol content.

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“The more alcohol in the system the higher a pedestrian’s risk of being involved in a crash,” he said.

“It’s the same as what we see in driving, alcohol can affect a person’s ability to make good decisions, slows their reaction time and impacts their awareness of their surroundings.

“That means they may not be able to accurately judge the speed of an oncoming car when they step out to cross the road.”

Mr Spalding said this week was a good time to have a conversation with loved ones about making safe choices and planning ahead before consuming alcohol.

“Talk to your loved ones about using taxis, ride-sharing services, and public transport which is available in most places – and don’t forget you could always arrange a designated driver,” he said.

“If you’re walking home, walk with a sober friend, stay on the footpath, and only cross the road at marked crossings or under street lights where you’re clearly visible to motorists.

“Let’s all take a moment to think about our actions when we are moving about our roads – so we can all get home safely.”