The Royal Australasian College of Surgeons (RACS) acknowledges the efforts of the South Australian Government to develop a new Road Safety Strategy to 2031, and the extensive consultation that has occurred as part of this process.
RACS has long recognised that road trauma is a serious public health problem of epidemic proportions. In March the College provided a submission to the initial consultation on this strategy. We would like to take this opportunity to reiterate the points made in our initial submission and request that this feedback continue to be taken into consideration as part of this submission.
RACS welcomes the all-encompassing nature of the strategy and the realistic aim of 50 per cent reduction in fatalities, and 30 per cent reduction in serious injuries by 2030, with a vision of zero fatalities and serious injuries by 2050. The College is satisfied that the vast majority of our recommendations have been considered as part of the consultation process.
We particularly welcome the following inclusions:
- A focus on the safe systems approach and ensuring that this is embedded throughout the strategy
- Ensuring that roads are designed in a manner that results in crashes being less likely to happen and, if they do occur, having a less severe outcome.
- Targeted strategies aimed at protecting vulnerable road users, such as younger and elderly drivers, Aboriginal people, pedestrians and cyclists.
- Tailored strategies aimed at improving road safety in regional and remote South Australia,
- Focus on data collection, enhancement and application, with a specific strategy to enable the provision of data via the new national road safety data hub.
While RACS supports the draft strategy, it is important to reiterate that the hard work has yet to begin. It is imperative that we remain committed to delivering the objectives of the new strategy throughout its tenure. This includes updating the Strategy when necessary and dedicating the appropriate resources and funding required to allow this to happen.
RACS recognises that it is incumbent upon us all to work towards these objectives, and we remain committed to advocating for and supporting sensible policies that aim to eliminate death and serious injury on our roads throughout the duration of the strategy.