RAC is urging young drivers heading away for leavers to slow down and consider the dangers of long-distance driving on regional roads.
RAC General Manager Corporate Affairs Will Golsby said young drivers were consistently over-represented in WA’s road trauma figures.
“Tragically, young people are some of the most vulnerable on our roads, becoming even more high risk as they transition from supervised driving to provisional and full licences,” Mr Golsby said.
“Combine this with travel on regional roads, where the road fatality rate is six times higher than Perth metropolitan, and the chance of being involved in a life-changing crash grows.
“Concerningly, leavers eager to begin celebrations, or to return home, may be tempted to sit over the already high-speed limits on regional roads, drive fatigued or use their phone while behind the wheel.
“Last year, speed was the most common behavioural factor in WA road fatalities, with 45 per cent occurring in 110km/h speed zones.
“Even small increases in speed significantly raise the risk of crash, serious injury and fatality.
“Research has shown the risk of being killed or seriously injured in a crash doubles for every five km/h above 60km/h.
“We’re urging leavers to please slow down and stay vigilant, you’re in control of the speed you drive, but you’re not in control of the consequences of your decision.
“Passengers also have an important role – be alert and have the confidence to tell your mates to slow down, ditch distractions and focus on the road ahead.”
RAC invites leavers driving back from the South West to take a break at RAC’s Leavers Pit Stop on the corner of Forrest Hwy and Lake Clifton Road between 10am and 4pm on Friday 27 November. RAC Patrols will be offering free mechanical checks, and leavers will be able to relax and take advantage of free snacks and soft drink to refuel them for their drive home.
“The RAC Leavers Pit Stop is a great opportunity to engage with young drivers and reinforce the importance of road safety. They’ll be able to stretch their legs, have a bit of fun and avoid driver fatigue.”
For more information visit the RAC website.
RAC’s tips for a safe road trip:
- Abide by road rules and reduce your speed for the conditions
- Put your phone away while driving or turn if off completely
- Get plenty of sleep before a long journey
- Take breaks every two hours
- Don’t overtake unless it’s safe to do so
- Keep a look out for wildlife warning signs in the area
- Keep your headlights on
- Plan your route beforehand so you know where you’re going
- Check where the rest stops and petrol stations are along the way
- Perform a basic vehicle check before leaving including your oil levels and tyre pressure
- Clean your vehicle’s windows and mirrors, and ensure your windscreen washer bottle is full
- Check your spare tyre is secured and in good condition