Road Trauma Support Services Victoria has developed a video submission to the National Joint Select Committee’s Inquiry into Road Safety.
We are unwilling to settle for 1,000 deaths on the road each year – or 39,000 life-changing injuries. No one should have to go through the grief and loss of road trauma. This is not the price anyone should have to pay for mobility.
Our lives are complex. About 70 per cent of crashes don’t involve high-risk behaviour; instead, they are caused by ‘simple errors’ and a moment of distraction. We can all do more to be present and mindful of the risks around us, and we encourage more resources and initiatives to address driver distraction.
However, to err is human. We need a safe system, which will require changes to our vehicles, roads, and speeds. Securing community support for these changes is critical. Thirty years ago, drink driving was acceptable, and now it’s not. So we know that this change is possible.
Changing culture to embrace road safety
We have witnessed that sharing lived experiences cuts through preconceived ideas and shifts in thinking, and we invite you to watch the short video above from our volunteer speakers.
People in our community choose to speak up about road safety for many reasons – they do not want others to experience what they have, they want to honour a loved one, and they can see the difference it makes. It takes skill, courage, commitment, education, and support to be done well.
Hundreds of thousands of people are caught up in the ripple effect of road trauma, and we hear their stories every day. We believe there are untapped opportunities to support and amplify the voices of people who have experienced road trauma to speak up and drive change locally.
One of the things this Committee could do that would have a considerable impact on promoting cultural change is to establish strategies and initiatives to mobilise ordinary Australians who have experienced road trauma to speak up and drive change.
We look forward to working with the Committee, and we would be pleased to share our experiences with you. We look forward to the outcomes of this inquiry and truly hope that we see action as soon as possible.
A big thank you to our brave volunteers for sharing their road trauma stories.