The latest data issued by the Australian government paints an ominous picture of the need to stay more alert than ever on the road. The Road Deaths Australia-Monthly Bulletins revealed an increase of 74 deaths in November 2023 compared to the previous 12 months.
The data showed there was a total of 107 road deaths during November 2023. The current figure is 11.2 per cent higher than the average for November over the previous five years. In the last 12 months (November 2022 to November 2023), there were 1,253 road fatalities, an increase of 6.3 per cent from the previous year.
Dr Matthew Hope, the Royal Australasian College of Surgeons (RACS) Trauma Committee Chair, said the figures painted a distressing picture of the ‘Vision Zero’ National Road Safety Strategy 2021-2030 which aims for zero deaths and serious injuries on our roads by 2050.
“When the strategy was launched, we expected to see a decrease in fatalities by 2023. We are seeing an equally troubling trend with e-scooters, with a steady rise in deaths of riders, passengers and pedestrians recorded globally, placing pressure on first responders as well as the surgical wait list in Australia and Aotearoa New Zealand. In Queensland alone, we had an average of around 100 patients each month admitted to the emergency department from e-scooter injuries.
“My strong message to the public is that whether you are a driver, pedestrian, motorcyclist, cyclist or riding an e-mobility device, do not take the road for granted. Give it the respect and full attention it needs. You do not want to make either yourself or someone around you the latest statistic. Stay safe and alert this Christmas period so that you don’t turn this festive season into the worst moment of someone’s life.”
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