Why so many deadly crashes hap­pen on ru­ral roads

Central Queensland News - - NEWS -

QUEENS­LAND driv­ers be­lieve they can get away with break­ing the law on re­gional roads – and it is killing them.

Road death sta­tis­tics show more than 70 per cent of Queens­land’s road fa­tal­i­ties in 2018 have hap­pened on re­gional roads. An anal­y­sis of De­part­ment of Trans­port and Main Road sta­tis­tics shows of the 197 peo­ple killed on Queens­land roads to Oc­to­ber 7 this year, 143 of them have died out­side Bris­bane and the Gold Coast.

The shock­ing statis­tic comes as Aus­tralian Road Safety Foun­da­tion re­search shows 38 per cent of driv­ers are more likely to break road rules on re­gional and ru­ral roads.

ARSF CEO and founder Rus­sell White said more than half of city driv­ers and 42 per cent of re­gional driv­ers said they did not think they would be caught on iso­lated roads.

“The re­search has told us that the main rea­son driv­ers are tak­ing more risks on ru­ral roads is be­cause they’re less likely to get caught,” he said.

“We will con­tinue to see this sig­nif­i­cant and un­nec­es­sary loss of life on re­gional roads un­til we make the ef­fort to shift this men­tal­ity so that we’re driv­ing with safety front of mind.”

Mr White said driv­ers needed to take own­er­ship of re­duc­ing the road toll.

“While there are a num­ber of fac­tors that con­trib­ute to the re­gional road toll, it’s ev­ery­day Aus­tralians that hold the key to safer roads,” he said.

RACQ spokesper­son Clare Hunter said crashes on re­gional roads of­ten hap­pened at high speeds.

“When crashes hap­pen out­side the south­east, they are more likely to hap­pen at higher speeds which is in­her­ently more dan­ger­ous,” she said.

The ARSF re­search showed re­gional driv­ers are more likely to drive while in­tox­i­cated, fa­tigued or not wear a seat­belt.

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