Police urge caution on roads during 2017
UNDOUBTEDLY 2016 will go down as one of the worst years in recent history for road crash fatalities in Australia.
Victoria has recorded its highest road death toll for the past five years - reaching 292, up 15.3 per cent from 2015.
The highest percentage of deaths have occurred with motorcyclists in the past 12 months with an 80 per cent rise - some 56 fatalities (all males).
“It’s not about the numbers, it’s about individual people - mothers, fathers, sons, daughters, grandparents and friends, who needlessly lose their lives, creating a lifetime of sorrow and grieving for those left behind,” Road Safety Education Limited (RSE) chief executive officer Terry Birss said.
“We need to work together – the educators, government, the community, police and businesses and importantly every road user to reduce the number of deaths on our roads. “Even one death is one too many.” RSE is a not-for-profit organisation, committed to reducing trauma on our roads by educating year 11 students through its flagship RYDA program.
It provides powerful workshops to change the way young people think about road safety.
RSE has strong support from corporate partners BOC, Toyota Australia, Bosch and Bridgestone, along with Rotary clubs, whose volunteers co-ordinate the program in their local area.
“Meanwhile we watch heartbreaking stories of young people losing their precious lives, hoping it never involves our own families,” Mr Birss said.
“It’s time to take the pledge, make that New Year’s resolution, to improve our driving, stick to the rules, turn that mobile phone off and leave it in the glove box when we’re driving,” he added.
Parents teaching their children to drive have a very significant role to play in helping their young driver to stay safe on the road.
“The best possible advice for any parent is to be a good role model for your learner driver,” Mr Birss said.
“Don’t be the parent to take that quick phone call when driving or to have a couple of drinks before getting behind the wheel.
“How you drive as a parent will set the standard for the novice driver.
“Let’s stop accepting death and serious injury as just part and parcel of using our roads,” he said.