Road trauma is a public health crisis. Close to 1,200 Australians are killed and around 44,000 are hospitalised due to road trauma every year. The true human impact of these injuries is revealed in an estimated 2,700 people who suffer brain injuries, 5,900 who suffer limb fractures and 10,000 who suffer soft tissue injuries every year.
The Office of Road Safety within the Commonwealth Department of Infrastructure, Transport, Regional Development and Communications is currently developing the next National Road Safety Strategy (NRSS) to take effect from 2021.
The Commonwealth, state and territory governments have demonstrated considerable leadership in their responses to the COVID-19 pandemic. The aim of this submission is to draw Ministers’ attention to the positive lessons and opportunities that can, and should, be applied to other public health crises with daily reporting of cases, hospitalisations and ICU numbers - noting that data on serious injuries from road crashes is frequently delayed and not easily available . This includes their urgent application to the next NRSS.