Risk and rural road use: all in a day's work and play

Blackman, Ross, Veitch, Craig, O'Connor, Teresa, & Sheehan, Mary C. (2006) Risk and rural road use: all in a day's work and play. In Social Change in the 21st Century, 2006, 27 October 2006, QUT Carseldine, Brisbane.


Rural and remote road safety is critically important to communities, government and industry in Australia and also overseas. The Rural and Remote Road Safety Study is addressing this concern in a North Queensland context through a five-year research program that is nearing completion. Preliminary findings suggest that substantial reduction of social, medical and economic costs generated by vehicle crashes requires interventions that foster and promote social change. For much of northern Australia this social change needs to be profound, as vehicle and alcohol use are so embedded and often intertwined in both the non-indigenous and contemporary Aboriginal cultures of the region. The immediate problems posed by this social entrenchment of incompatible practices are often compounded by long distances between destinations, as well as by limited emergency, health, driver training, police and other services relative to urban areas. While a trend toward greater enforcement and penalties continues, there remains the question of how to otherwise convince people to reorder their priorities, placing road safety first. Thematic analysis has been performed on 230 narratives obtained from patients injured in a rural North Queensland crash, some of which illuminate these concerns. This paper demonstrates through the use of pertinent examples the extent to which driving, drinking, entertainment and sometimes working occur simultaneously in the course of a normal day for some North Queensland people. These insights may be used to enhance future policy and interventions regarding rural and remote road safety.

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ID Code: 6339
Item Type: Conference Paper
Refereed: Yes
Keywords: rural, driving, risk, road safety, narrative
ISBN: 1741071291
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > PSYCHOLOGY AND COGNITIVE SCIENCES (170000) > PSYCHOLOGY (170100) > Social and Community Psychology (170113)
Divisions: Current > Research Centres > Centre for Accident Research & Road Safety - Qld (CARRS-Q)
Current > Research Centres > Centre for Social Change Research
Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Faculty of Health
Current > Institutes > Institute of Health and Biomedical Innovation
Copyright Owner: Copyright 2006 (The authors)
Deposited On: 02 Mar 2007 00:00
Last Modified: 29 Feb 2012 13:24

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