Statistics show that 213 road fatalities involved heavy vehicles last year, with 11.3 per cent of those including a bus
Statistics show that 213 road fatalities involved heavy vehicles last year, with 11.3 per cent of those including a bus.
The number of fatal bus collisions is up marginally on 2015 after three years of declining crash death rates, and has now reached pre-2012 levels again.
These findings are detailed in the Federal Government Department of Infrastructure and Regional Development’s road trauma involving heavy vehicles 2016 statistical summary, which was released last month.
This report presents counts and rates of fatal crashes, fatalities and hospitalised injuries from road traffic crashes in which one or more heavy vehicles were involved.
Of the 213 deaths, 50.2 per cent occurred in crashes involving an articulated truck (down on 2015 numbers), 42.7 per cent involved a heavy rigid truck (up compared to 2015), and 11.3 per cent involved a bus.
Vehicle occupants ( driver or passenger) accounted for 77 per cent of fatalities from crashes involving a heavy vehicle (average for 2012-2015, up on the previous four-year period).
The remainder are pedestrians (11.4 per cent), motorcyclists (7.8 per cent) and cyclists (3.7 per cent).
Of total vehicle occupant deaths, 23.9 per cent were heavy vehicle occupants – this figure was down compared to the previous four-year period.
Approximately 1700 people are hospitalised from crashes involving heavy vehicles each year, accounting for about 5 per cent of all hospitalised road traffi c crash injuries.
Analysis by geographical region for 2015 shows that
“The number of fatal bus crashes has now reached pre-2012 levels again”
most fatal articulated truck-involved crashes occur in a regional area (73.7 per cent), down marginally on 2014.
The remainder occur in a remote area (10.1 per cent, up marginally) and in a main city (16.2 per cent, down marginally).
The corresponding proportions for fatal heavy rigid truck involved crashes are 58.9 per cent (regional, up), 6.8 per cent (remote, up) and 34.2 ( city, down).
Over the last 25 years, counts of fatal crashes involving articulated trucks have decreased by 39.7 per cent. By jurisdiction, the reductions range from 0 per cent for Queensland to 64.1 per cent for New South Wales.
During this time, however, registrations have increased by 44 per cent (NSW) and 134 per cent (Queensland).
Vulnerable road users (pedestrians, motorcyclists and cyclists) account for 15 per cent of fatalities in crashes where an articulated truck is involved.
This proportion has not changed in 25 years.
For bus-involved crashes, vulnerable road users account for 50 per cent of fatalities, which has also not significantly changed in 25 years.
Above: Counts of fatal crashes by heavy vehicle type