RAPID ACCELERATION OF VEHICLE TECHNOLOGY AMONGST KEY RECOMMENDATIONS TO REDUCE ROAD TRAUMA
The Amy Gillett Foundation is honoured to have been invited by the Deputy Prime Minister, the Honourable Michael McCormack, to attend the release of the Report on the Inquiry into the National Road Strategy 2011 – 2018, at Parliament House Canberra today.
We welcome the key findings and twelve recommendations, contained in the report.
It’s clear from the Report that there has been an implementation failure with the current strategy and urgent action is needed to address the scale, economic and human costs of road trauma.
We are heartened that a bipartisan approach is being taken to this wicked issue. This is a national problem that must be addressed with national leadership.
As noted by the co-authors of the Report in their remarks today, Dr John Crozier and Associate Professor Jeremy Woolley, we owe it to the next generation to take decisive action and strive for zero deaths. Safer is not acceptable, we must strive for SAFE.
For too long safety has been seen as an ‘add on’ which has been traded off against other demands.
In particular, life-saving vehicle technology is taking too long to mandate, and we are pleased that one of the recommendations is to:
Implement rapid deployment and accelerated uptake of proven vehicle safety technologies and innovation (Recommendation 7)
For cyclists and other vulnerable road users, such technology has the capacity to make a real difference, and should become standard.
We look forward to the Government’s timely response to this important Report.
The Amy Gillett Foundation made a submission to the Inquiry which was supported by Cycling Australia, Bicycle NSW, Westcycle and Pedal Power ACT [read our submission here]
A copy of the Inquiry Report can be found here
State of play:
- Australia’s road safety performance has stalled
- The scale of personal and financial costs of road trauma is unacceptable with current actions and investments not achieving the desired results
- Failing to improve our current situation with result in 12,000 people being killed and 360,000 injured at a cost of $300b by 2030 alone
- This demands large-scale action, with a disaster response that reflects the true measure of the problem
The harsh reality:
- In 2017 – 1,226 people dies on our roads – reversing the safety gains made in the previous decade
- Every year, another 36,000 people are admitted to hospital
- Road crashes cost our economy more than $30B each year
- Road crashes impose a heavy burden on families, friends, communities, the health sector, insurers and social services – a burden that is largely avoidable
- The link between where the costs of road trauma are borne and where the solutions exist is not made, and gross under-funding results
Summary of recommendations
- Create strong national leadership by appointing a Cabinet minister with specific multi-agency responsibility to address the hidden epidemic of road trauma including its impact on the health system.
- Establish a national road safety entity reporting to the Cabinet minister with responsibility for road safety.
- Commit to a minimum $3 billion a year road safety fund.
- Set a vision zero target for 2050 with an interim target of vision zero for all major capital city CBD areas, and high-volume highways by 2030.
- Establish and commit to key performance indicators in time for the next strategy that measure and report how harm can be eliminated in the system, and that are published annually.
- Undertake a National Road Safety Governance Review by March 2019.
- Implement rapid deployment and accelerated uptake of proven vehicle safety technologies and innovation.
- Accelerate the adoption of speed management initiatives that support harm elimination.
- Invest in road safety focused infrastructure, safe system and mobility partnerships with state, territory and local governments that accelerate the elimination of high-risk roads.
- Make road safety a genuine part of business as usual within Commonwealth, state, territory and local government.
- Resource key road safety enablers and road safety innovation initiatives.
- Implement life-saving partnerships with countries in the Indo-Pacific and globally as appropriate to reduce road trauma