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OPEN ROAD 7
Rise in road deaths must be stopped
Tim Trumper says
on our roads must
be a top priority
ANOTHER HORRIFIC period on
our roads has marred the first
quarter of 2018. Every road death
is a national tragedy and worthy of
our immediate attention.
Particularly notable about the
road toll over recent months has
been the shocking nature of these
crashes, such as the high-profile
crash on the South Coast that took
the lives of a whole family, and the
multi-vehicle pileup on the Newell
Highway behind stationary traffic.
These, and other crashes,
featured prominently on the
nightly news during the holiday
period and in the first few weeks of
2018. At the time of writing this
column, 30 people had been killed
on NSW roads. That’s seven more
than the same time for the
previous year, which we know was
terrible – the worst since 2009.
The causes of these crashes
have remained heartbreakingly
similar over the last few decades.
Speed was a factor in 40 per cent
of crashes in 2017, followed by
fatigue and drink driving. Two-
thirds of crashes occurred on
regional roads and, contrary to
popular belief, most of the victims
were locals and not out-of-towners.
In addition to these traditional
risks, the police must contend with
the dangers of drug driving and
those distracted by smartphones.
NRMA research found 15 per cent of
people using their phones illegally
behind the wheel believe they won’t
get caught. They’re wrong.
Technology may be adding to
driver distraction, but it’ll play a
large part in providing solutions. We
know the police are looking to new
technology that’ll make it easier to
catch and fine people using their
phones while driving. The NRMA is
also investing in connected
technology that alerts drivers who
need to take a break and provides
safety scores around speeding.
Furthermore, we must ensure
changes to road safety laws are
evidence-based and backed by
research and data to deliver real
outcomes. The greatest successes
we’ve had in recent decades have
been when laws were adopted
using these measures – the
introduction of seat belts, blood
alcohol content limits, and the
Graduation Licensing Scheme for
young drivers are all examples.
As a community, we must work
together to put an end to the
needless deaths on our roads.
Please be safe over the Easter
holidays and throughout 2018.
Sydney’s transport system has received a lot of attention in
recent weeks. The city’s rail network carries a million people
each weekday and we’ve seen the impact on our quality of life
and on the city’s economy when it doesn’t work properly.
Ensuring our transport network – both roads and public
transport – deliver the maximum benefit to the community is
critical to the future growth of our great city.
Over the next few years, our local NRMA region of Harbour
will see some of the most significant road and public
transport projects in Sydney’s history, either under
construction or in planning mode. NRMA Members will make
many hundreds of millions of trips each year on the new
infrastructure that’s underway and proposed, including: the
Northern Beaches Tunnel, WestConnex, NorthConnex, the
Western Harbour Tunnel, SouthConnex, the Northern Beaches
B-Line Program, the Sydney Metro and Sydney Light Rail.
The NRMA was a strong voice advocating for the
construction of these projects over many years. This role is
important because building these projects and then ensuring
they deliver consistent value to our Members is paramount to
ensuring Sydney remains a world-class city.
The last edition of Open Road demonstrated that the NRMA
is committed to being an active player in keeping people
moving every day. As reported, Manly Fast Ferry is now part
of the NRMA. Many Members, including myself, use the
service regularly, and are heavily reliant on its efficient, safe
travel and outstanding customer service. It’s incredibly
exciting that Sydney’s world-renowned harbour will also
become one of its most efficient highways.
Many of the commuters impacted by the problems on
Sydney’s trains in January were our Members. The NRMA’s
role as an independent voice advocating for better roads and
public transport services continues to be as important as ever.
TRANSPORT CONNECTIONS CRITICAL TO SYDNEY
TIM TRUMPER Chairman and Director
Inner West, North Shore and Eastern Suburbs
The majority of
crashes last year were
on regional roads.
9/2/18 3:24 pm
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