Did you know that this week (21-25 August) is Queensland Road Safety Week? This week is a chance for all Queenslanders (including us at Gouldson Legal) to be involved in making our roads a safer place for all.This year ‘Speaking up for road safety’ is the focus, and we’re all encouraged to have our say – sharing a personal story, suggesting a road safety tip, talking to others about staying safe or making a pledge to improve just one thing to be safer on our roads.
The week itself is also about challenging our acceptance of death and serious injury as just ‘part and parcel’ of using our roads.
This is something that I, and the entire Gouldson Legal team is very passionate about – we see the consequences of unsafe driving every single day, furthermore, a number of our team have experienced this themselves. None of us are immune to the state of our roads, or the other road users, who may not necessarily take road safety as seriously as they should.
This year each day of the five-day Road Safety week will focus on a different road safety issue.
In 2015 more than 25% of speed-related crashed resulted in a death. Adding to this a 2016 survey found that 48% of us admit to speeding on all or most of our car trips – a dangerous habit.
Tuesday: Drink + Drug Driving
In 2015 drink driving contributed to almost 25% of all road fatalities and a road strategy report found that drug driving contributed to 7% of serious crashes nationally. Adding to this, 1 in 4 of us don’t know when it is legally safe to drive the day after drinking.
Wednesday: Distractions, seatbelts + child restraints
Despite the dangers, around 76% of Queenslanders admit to using their mobile while driving – even though this quadruples our risk of a serious crash and can be as risky as drink driving!
Did you know that wearing a properly adjusted restraint (seatbelt or other) reduces the risk of fatal or serious injury by 50% and we’re 8 times more likely to be killed in a road crash if we aren’t wearing a seatbelt?
Thursday: Sharing the road
Research shows that 85% of Queenslanders agree we should be more tolerant on the road. Reducing dangerous behaviours, like tailgating, is the first step towards increased tolerance (and safety)!
Fatigue is a tricky one, and depending on your work or lifestyle, it can be difficult to manage at times. However, learning how to best manage fatigue – or even knowing when to admit you are too fatigue to drive – is important for increasing safety on our roads.
This is because fatigue related crashes are often severe and occur when the driver is alone – mostly between 2am and 6am, but more surprisingly, also between 2pm and 4pm.
There’s a lot to cover in the area of Road Safety – including all those other road users who aren’t necessarily in a vehicle, such as pedestrians and cyclists - but these five days look to address factors which we can think about as drivers ourselves.