Road safety in rural and remote areas of Australia
Annually across Australia about 1,000 people are killed on roads in rural and remote areas, while approximately a further 26,000 people are injured. Those found to be at most risk are young male drivers, truck drivers, pedestrians and those living in these areas, particularly Indigenous Australians. Key behavioural factors associated with increased crash risk include motorists driving while under the influence of alcohol and other drugs, speeding, fatigue and failure to wear seat belts or helmets. Road factors also found to contribute to crashes included roads with poor surfaces, roads with unsealed shoulders, roads with poor delineation and roadside hazards. The study also confirmed the importance of the need to respond rapidly to the occurrence of crashes and to treat those injured quickly. It is clear that crash severity outcome is closely related to the time taken to reach and treat crash victims. The report identifies behavioural, environmental and ITS interventions, and improved medical practices and trauma management services to reduce the incidence and severity of crashes in these areas.
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