WA road fatalities
We look into the numbers of WA road fatalities, what makes us crash, and how the age of our car affects the outcome
With urgent State and Federal Government action we can prevent more than 2,100 serious crashes from occurring in regional communities. Saving thousands of people from death and serious injury.
In just five years, more than 500 people have been killed and 2,700 seriously injured on WA's regional roads - a devastating reality for our regional communities and the equivalent of wiping out the entire population of a small town.
Shockingly, deaths on regional roads occur at four times the national average.
Nearly 70 per cent of all serious crashes in regional WA involve cars running off the road or drifting into the path of oncoming traffic - deaths and serious injuries that could be avoided with low-cost road upgrades.
RAC is calling on the State and Federal Governments to fund a $900 million Regional Road Safety Package, which would see crucial upgrades across 17,000 kilometres of WA's regional road network:
The State and Federal Governments have announced a partnership to jointly fund the first year ($100 million) of a Regional Road Improvement Program, however a commitment to fully fund and deliver the entire program is urgently needed.
Low-cost safety treatments are cost-effective road upgrades which can significantly reduce the risk and severity of a crash. The treatments this Package would fund include:
Audible Line Markings:
Also known as rumble strips, Audible Tactile Line Marketing (ATLM) are narrow lines of raised or grooved material along the edge or in the centre of a road, designed to alert the driver when they're drifting out of their lane or into oncoming traffic. The sound and vibration of a tyre passing over these lines allows the driver to correct their path, reducing the likelihood of a crash.
Sealed Road Shoulders:
Sealed road shoulders refer to the asphalted or sealed strips at the edge of a road, outside of the white lines that mark a traffic lane. Unsealed road shoulders are usually gravel or grass and make it difficult to steer and brake at high speed, increasing the chances of a crash.
The Regional Road Safety Package would invest $900 million into upgrading 17,000 kms of WA's regional roads. This is just two per cent of the taxes WA motorists are expected to pay to the State and Federal Governments each year (based on 2019-20 budgets), and a drop in the ocean compared to the cost of road trauma on our health system.
In June 2020, the State and Federal Governments announced a funding partnership to deliver the first year of a Regional Road Safety Improvement Program. The $100 million commitment will fund safety treatments to 1,400 kms of WA’s regional roads, such as sealing road shoulders and installing audible edge lines.
RAC has welcomed the funding, which is a critical first step in reducing the unacceptable number of deaths and serious injuries on WA’s regional roads. However we continue to call on government to fund the entire Regional Road Safety Package and commit to upgrading a further 16,000 kms of WA’s regional road network.
RAC continues to call on government to fund the Regional Road Safety Package in full, which would deliver $900 million in life-saving upgrades to 17,000 kms of WA’s regional roads.
While it has been proposed as a nine-year program in the past, to deliver the life-saving benefits as quickly as possible it should be prioritised and completed within four.