Wednesday, November 23, 2005

My letter to the Courier Mail about "road carnage" bollocks

Despite ever improving safety in our vehicles, Australian road tolls have been essentially constant for over a decade.


Queensland Transport's Roadsafety website tells us that most of the initiatives of the last 15 years - including 50km/h zones - have been abject failures.

(Reference, Graph 1)

Yet every time there's a significant tragedy, and every holiday period, there's bleating from politicians about "road carnage" and the need for more enforcement - particularly speed. They tell us that three causes: alcohol and drug use, disobeying traffic rules and inattention EACH contribute to fatalities twice as much as speed, yet these causes certainly do not benefit from twice the effort.


When will we hold our leaders accountable for failing to address the road toll? Every year we let them do it to us again, without asking why nothing has changed.

Here's a worrying thought: Would politicians have a defence against a lawsuit for negligent manslaughter, for failing to adequately address road safety? An employer who continued to rely on ineffective safety measures, resulting in the death of a worker certainly would not!

James McIntosh


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