For several years Northern Territory surgeons have joined with other medical professionals calling for an end to unrestricted speeds on a 336 kilometres stretch of highway between Alice Springs and Ali Curung.

The Northern Territory Government initially announced a trial of unrestricted speeds along a 204 kilometre section of highway in February 2014, and has since expanded the zone twice.

This short video highlights the concern of Territorian medical professionals.


Having trouble viewing this video? Watch on YouTube.

In July 2015 NT trauma surgeon David Read published an article in the Medical Journal of Australia about the relationship between speed and crash risk. Although nobody has died in the unrestricted speed zone yet, Dr Read believes it's only a matter of time.

"Trauma is too often considered an accident when it should be considered a preventable disease," Dr Read says.

"Allowing unlimited speed on major highways sends the wrong message to the NT population, especially when they are already three times more likely to die on the roads than people living in other parts of Australia, and at a rate that is equivalent to that in many low and middle-income countries."

In June 2016 the Advertising Standards Board ruled that an advertisement filmed by Bentley Motors in the unrestricted zone breached clauses 2(a) and 2(b) of the Federal Chamber of Automotive Industries Voluntary Code of Practice for Motor Vehicle Advertising. These clauses state that advertisers should ensure motor vehicle advertisements do not portray unsafe driving, or people driving at excessive speeds. The ad was subsequently removed from YouTube.

Road safety is no accident - help put the brakes on open speed zones.


9 July 2013 - RACS media release Surgeons point to fewer high speed deaths as proof that speed limits work (PDF 38.81KB)
17 January 2014 - Joint letter of objection, RACP, ACEM, RACS, AMA NT (PDF 124.09KB)
17 January 2014 - Joint media release Objection to Open Speed (PDF 248.01KB)
1 February 2014 - IRAP letter to Minister re open speed (PDF 392.38KB)
22 June 2015 - MJA Media release Speed Limits in the NT (PDF 133.98KB)
6 July 2015 - MJA article, David Read , Open speeds on Northern Territory Roads
15 July 2015 - Joint letter to Minister requesting clarification on plans to further expand the open speed zone (PDF 143.37KB)
4 September 2015 - Joint letter to Ministers condemning the expansion of the open speed zone (PDF 106.69KB)
15 November 2015 - Joint media release Road Toll: Counting the human cost of speed (PDF 352.46KB)
28 June 2016 - Advertising Standards Board ruling, Bentley ad complaint (PDF 440.99KB)