Queensland Road Safety Action Plan 2013–2015

Department of Transport and Main Roads
Queensland Road Safety
Action Plan
Great state. Great opportunity.
Road safety is a major issue in Queensland and since a record low of 249 fatalities in 2010, the road toll has been steadily
increasing. Tragically, people are killed or seriously injured on our roads everyday.
This has devastating impacts on individuals and their families, friends and the community. This is why the Queensland
Government remains committed to making roads safer and reducing injuries and fatalities on our roads.
It’s time for action on road safety
The Queensland Road Safety Action Plan has been developed over the past 12 months with more than 60 action items
to tackle Queensland’s rising road toll.
The $350 million, two year plan targets improvements to infrastructure, speed management, vehicle safety,
road users and the community.
It includes:
• $2 million for a community road safety fund for local education and awareness
• $1.6 million to expand an alcohol and risk-related trauma injury awareness program
• $480,000 to educate students of the risks involved with vehicles
• $82 million a year to fast-track road safety engineering treatments
• a review of speed limits on up to 100 Queensland roads
• the on going roll out of flashing light signs at 300 schools
• a $19.8 million three year campaign to change driver behaviour
• reforms to licensing for younger and older drivers, and motorcyclists.
Queensland Road Safety Action Plan 2013–2015, Transport and Main Roads
The Queensland Government has undertaken a 12 month review of
road safety, from an examination of our most vulnerable road users
(including older drivers and motorcyclists) to an assessment of
Queensland’s busiest highway with the release of the 2012 Bruce
Highway Action Plan.
It is now time for action. This action plan sets out what the
government will do over the course of the next two years to work
towards achieving a safe road transport system. It addresses the
areas of the road network that have the greatest potential to reduce
the number of casualties on our roads. These include targeted
improvements to road and roadside infrastructure, educating road
users to make safe on-road decisions and comply with existing laws,
encouraging people to purchase the safest vehicle in their price
range and maintaining a strong speed management program. A mix
of actions from these areas will be used to make the greatest gains.
The Camera Detected Offence Program plays an important role in the
overall approach to improving road safety in Queensland by funding
essential road safety initiatives. The program is used to improve
road safety by upgrading or enhancing road infrastructure at high
risk locations, providing blood products to road trauma victims and
public education in key areas targeting the Fatal Five speeding, distraction and inattention, drink and drug driving,
failure to wear a seatbelt and driver fatigue.
Queensland cannot afford to be complacent when it comes to road
safety. All of us – government, business and the community –
must play our part. There is no doubt that engaging the community
is critical to changing attitudes and behaviour and ultimately
improving safety on our roads. This is why the government is
working on a new and innovative approach to strengthen and
refocus the perception of road safety in the community and
influence the role individuals play in reducing the road toll.
A national target has been set to reduce the annual number of
fatalities and serious injuries by at least 30% by 2020. The actions
contained in the plan are aimed at contributing to the target, and
fulfilling Queensland’s commitment to the global Decade of Action
for Road Safety.
The action plan details the initiatives and projects that will be
developed and implemented to provide a safer road transport
system over the next two years. The initiatives fall under several
pillars: roads and roadsides, speeds, vehicles, road users and
community partnerships.
The Queensland Government is committed to working with the
community to stop the deaths and serious injuries that occur on
our roads.
Together we can make a difference.
Scott Emerson MP
Minister for Transport and Main Roads
Jack Dempsey MP
Minister for Police and Community Safety
Neil Scales
Department of Transport and Main Roads
Ian Stewart
Queensland Police Service
Queensland Road Safety Action Plan 2013–2015, Transport and Main Roads
Road safety analysis
The Queensland road toll dropped to a record low of 249
deaths in 2010. However, there has been no consistent
downward trend over the last decade, and since this record
low, the road toll has started to increase. There has also
been little change to the number of people hospitalised
(approximately 6500 people) as a result of crashes
each year.
Table 1: Number of fatalities and hospitalisations between
2008 and 2012
Roads and roadsides
Figure 1 shows that the majority of serious casualties (that is,
fatalities and hospitalisations) between 2008–2012 resulted from
the following three types of crashes:
Intersection crashes: 9394 serious casualties occurred at
intersections. Intersections involve different types of road users
(including motor vehicles, pedestrians and cyclists) moving in
conflicting directions which can present a crash risk.
Number of fatalities
Number of
Figure 1: Serious casualties as a result of crashes by crash type,
2008 to 2012.
Head-on crashes: 2512 serious casualties were as a result of
head-on crashes. The level of risk of a head-on crash is much higher
when vehicles are travelling at high speeds, in opposite directions
on two-way undivided roads, which is often the case in rural and
remote areas.
Run-off-the-road crashes: 10,233 serious casualties were as a result
of run-off-the-road crashes. A run-off-the-road crash occurs when a
vehicle leaves the road and collides with a roadside object such as
a tree or a pole.
Note: the other category is made up of many crash types including
overtaking in the same direction, hitting parked vehicles, hitting
railway trains and hitting pedestrians.
This action plan aims to influence a substantial number of crashes
by targeting infrastructure treatments for these types of crashes.
Figure 2: Serious casualties as a result of crashes by speed zone,
2008 to 2012.
Serious casualties by speed zone
Serious casualties
Between 2008 and 2012, there were 2176 serious casualities in
road crashes involving speeding drivers and riders. The incidence
of speeding and speed related crashes was a particular problem in
60km speed zones. Figure 2 shows the number of serious casualties
by speed zone during 2008–2012. The largest proportion of serious
casualties occurred in 60km/h speed zones (44.5%).
0 - 50
80 - 90
100 - 110
Speed zone (km/h)
Queensland Road Safety Action Plan 2013–2015, Transport and Main Roads
Road safety analysis
An analysis of serious casualties by age (Figure 3) shows that
4.7% were aged 75 years and over, while comprising 5.5% of the
population, and children aged 0 to 16 years comprised 8.1% of the
serious casualty tally, although making up 22.7% of Queensland’s
population. This implies that children and older road users are not
overrepresented when compared on a per head of population basis.
By way of comparison, Queenslanders aged 17–24 comprise 11.4%
of the state’s population, however constitute 24.5% of all serious
Figure 3: Serious casualties as a result of crashes by age group,
2008 to 2012.
Serious casualties
Serious casualties by age
Getting behind the wheel while impaired by alcohol is among the most
dangerous of on-road behaviours. Between 2008 and 2012, there were
3625 serious casualties as a result of drink driving/riding crashes.
Dangerous behaviours, such as speeding and driving while fatigued
or distracted, not only puts your life at risk, but endangers the
lives of others. The government will continue to target high risk
behaviours to improve the safety of our roads.
Serious casualties by road
user type
Vulnerable road users (motorcyclists, pedestrians and cyclists)
comprised 25.4% of all serious casualties during the period 2008 –
2012 (Figure 5). Motorcyclists and their passengers comprise over
half of vulnerable road user serious casualties.
Unsurprisingly, over half of all serious casualties were drivers, and
20.3% were passengers.
0-16 17-24 25-34 35-44 45-54 55-64 65-74 75 and
Casualty age group
Figure 4: Serious casualties as a result of crashes by high risk
behaviour, 2008 to 2012.
Serious casualties
A small group of drivers have been shown to be at higher risk
of being involved in a crash because of the choices they make.
These include motorists who drive with high blood/breath alcohol
concentration levels, those who frequently drive at inappropriate
speeds and those who drive when tired or not wearing a seatbelt.
A number of actions in the plan target Queensland’s young and
novice drivers.
Serious casualties by behaviour
Speeding Unrestrained
Figure 5: Serious casualties as a result of crashes by road user type,
2008 to 2012.
Queensland Road Safety Action Plan 2013–2015, Transport and Main Roads
Roads and roadsides
Road and roadside infrastructure
can influence both the risk of a
crash and its severity.
Infrastructure improvements can influence crash outcomes in two ways. Firstly, general investment in roads improves the overall
quality of the road network, resulting in indirect safety benefits. Secondly, expenditure on safety-focussed improvements such
as shoulder sealing, median barriers and intersection treatments directly reduce road trauma by creating infrastructure that is
more forgiving of human error.
In 2013–14, over $3.9 billion will be invested on Queensland’s roads, including funding towards targeted safety improvements.
The Safer Roads Sooner program prioritises road improvement projects in high crash risk locations to gain the greatest road
safety benefits. The program is primarily funded from the Queensland Camera Detected Offence Program.
Priority actions
• Increase funds allocated to the Safer Roads Sooner program
to $82 million per year, to fast-track engineering treatments
at higher risk sites on the state-controlled road network.
Treatments will comprise high-benefit, low-cost safety
improvement projects targeting serious crash types, including
head-on, run-off-the-road and crashes on high speed roads.
Projects will include:
installing wide centreline road markings including Audio Tactile
Line Marking to reduce the likelihood of head-on crashes
clearing roadside edges, installing safety barriers and
sealing shoulders, prioritised on a crash history basis to
reduce the likelihood of run-off-the-road crashes
painting right turn lanes, installing right turn arrows at
signalised intersections, installing pedestrian facilities and
improving skid resistance at intersections
implementing engineering treatments that reduce the crash
risk and severity for motorcyclists by targeting popular routes
that have high crash rates
$2 million per year to introduce cycle safety treatments at
higher risk locations including line markings to reduce the
potential for vehicle and bicycle conflicts.
• Work with the Australian Government to implement the highest
priority road safety infrastructure improvements on the Bruce
Highway as identified in the 2012 Bruce Highway Action Plan.
• Display safety messages on existing variable message signs on
state-controlled roads.
• Complete the Vehicle Activated Signs Mass Action Program
($600,000 in 2013–14). Under this program, electronic signs
activated by vehicle speeds will be installed:
to encourage better speed compliance on the approaches to
intersections with poor safety performance, and in advance
of hazardous curves
as interim treatments to locations with a high crash risk, prior
to more significant works being designed and implemented.
• Identify and trial innovative safety engineering treatments to
further increase visibility of road markings in heavy rain.
• Upgrade Queensland’s state-controlled motorways including the
Western Freeway and Pacific Motorway. Upgrades will include
the installation of dynamic message signs and variable speed
limits to improve incident detection and ease congestion.
• Provide $40 million per year to local governments through the
Roads Alliance partnership between the Department of Transport
and Main Roads and the Local Government Association of
Queensland to improve local government roads.
• Invest $10 million in 2013–14 towards Roadside Rest Areas to
encourage improved fatigue management amongst motorists
and heavy vehicle drivers.
• Invest $20 million over 2013–15 towards the ongoing expansion
of the south-east Queensland regional cycle network through
Cycle Network Local Government Grants.
• Invest $20 million annually on the statewide line marking program
to improve road surface delineation on state-controlled roads.
Queensland Road Safety Action Plan 2013–2015, Transport and Main Roads
Speed management is essential
to reducing road deaths and
serious injuries on our roads.
Speed increases the risk of a crash occurring by lengthening stopping distances, increasing the risk of losing control on curves
or during emergency manoeuvres, and decreasing vehicle stability. It also increases the severity of a crash by intensifying the
physical forces of the impact.
The Camera Detected Offence Program is a joint partnership between the Queensland Police Service and the Department of
Transport and Main Roads. It includes mobile speed cameras, fixed speed cameras, red light cameras, combined red light/
speed cameras and point-to-point speed camera systems. The Camera Detected Offence Program has a proven record in
reducing Queensland’s road toll.
Priority actions
• Increase the mobile speed camera enforcement program
deployment hours to at least 90,000 per year.
• Undertake a statewide speed limit review, to assess current
speed limit setting processes and review up to 100 nominated
roads. As part of this process, seek public nominations as to
which roads are included as part of the review.
• Investigate the upgrade of several existing red light camera
locations to include speed detection capability, to reduce
speeding through intersections and the severity of crashes.
• Work with traffic control companies to encourage compliance
with the installation of signs and traffic control devices
at roadwork sites, and to ensure that roadwork signage is
removed or appropriately covered when works are not in
• Collaborate with the Centre for Accident Research and Road
Safety – Queensland and industry on a large scale research
project to identify best practice strategies to reduce speeds in
roadwork sites.
• Undertake the following actions to ensure that the speed
camera program continues to reduce the number of crashes on
Queensland roads:
review the scheduling method for mobile speed cameras to
maximise the general deterrence of speeding and reduce
road casualties
undertake an annual statewide speed survey to measure
general vehicle speeds on Queensland roads
complete an annual review of program efficiency and
effectiveness to ensure the program continues to focus on
reducing road casualties
upgrade existing wet film mobile speed cameras and
fixed camera locations to digital technology to enhance
reliability by 2015.
• Trial innovative practices at roadwork sites, including traffic
control devices and signage, to reduce the speed of vehicles
entering roadwork sites.
Queensland Road Safety Action Plan 2013–2015, Transport and Main Roads
Vehicle safety features can help prevent
crashes from occurring in the first instance,
and help to reduce the severity of injuries
in the event of a crash to both vehicle
occupants and other road users involved,
including pedestrians.
The range of safety features on new vehicles increases each year. There are clear safety benefits to be realised from a young
vehicle fleet, as research has shown that the rate of serious and fatal crashes increase with age of the vehicle.
The average age of vehicles on Queensland roads has remained relatively static over recent years, at approximately 9.7 years.
Reducing the age of Queensland’s vehicle fleet will be important in reducing the number of serious casualties on our roads.
Priority actions
• Continue to support and participate in the Australian New Car
Assessment Program (ANCAP) to give Queenslanders the latest
information on the safety features of new cars such as crash
avoidance technology and autonomous emergency braking.
The ANCAP program:
awards a star rating from 1 to 5 for each vehicle following
independent crash tests by specialist laboratories
provides consumers with information about the availability
of safety features and vehicle performance that go beyond
regulatory requirements
provides the automotive industry with guidance on
future ANCAP requirements to assist with the design and
specification of new models.
• Continue to encourage car buyers (particularly young drivers
and their parents) to consider the safety of a vehicle based on
independent information about used cars on the Australian
market through the Used Car Safety Ratings (UCSR).
• Implement a public communications strategy to further increase
consumer demand for vehicle safety by:
promoting the benefits of safety features in new and
used vehicles
raising public awareness of the ANCAP star rating system
and promoting the latest ANCAP crash test results on the
Transport and Main Roads website
improving availability and accessibility of consumer
information about used vehicle safety
promoting advancements in vehicle safety technologies
aimed at enhancing stability, traction and braking of
Queensland Road Safety Action Plan 2013–2015, Transport and Main Roads
• Develop industry partnerships to communicate the importance
of fleet safety and improve the uptake of safer vehicles in
Queensland’s commercial fleet.
• Improve the uptake of used cars with enhanced safety features
in Queensland by maintaining mandatory minimum safety
specifications for all new passenger and light commercial
vehicles in the government fleet.
• Promote safe vehicle information to the business community
to curb work-related crashes, which are a significant part of the
road toll and account for a high proportion of all work-related
deaths and injuries.
• Review patterns of older vehicle occupant injury and vehicle
crash test results to investigate vehicle safety features that
benefit older drivers and passengers.
• Use the outcomes of this research to provide older drivers
with information to encourage them to consider specific safety
features when buying a car, such as head-protecting airbags and
features that make driving safer, easier and more comfortable.
Road users
A safe road transport system
requires alert road users who
follow the rules of the road.
Many behaviours increase the risk of a serious crash, including speeding, driving or riding while under the influence of
alcohol or drugs, driving or riding while fatigued or distracted and travelling without a seatbelt.
While progress has been made in influencing driver behaviour on Queensland roads, there are still a number of key priority
areas that require addressing in order to further reduce road trauma. These include licensing reforms aimed at protecting our
most vulnerable road users (including novice drivers, older road users and motorcyclists), enforcement to target dangerous
behaviours including the Fatal Five and tackling road safety at the grassroots level through the coordination of programs
such as Driver Reviver and the School Crossing Supervisor Scheme.
Priority actions
• Implement a range of licensing reforms including:
- redesign the Q-SAFE licensing assessment to ensure that
novice drivers’ experience and ability to safely manage
diverse road environments and risks are adequately tested
- develop and implement an enhanced motorcycle rider
knowledge test
- formalise the current elective competency-based training
and assessment program as the primary motorcycle
licensing practical test
- enhance Queensland’s Graduated Licensing System for
motorcyclists to help novice riders develop critical riding
skills under safe conditions.
• Implement the recommendations included in the Older Driver
Safety Advisory Committee Report (2012) including:
- introduce a maximum 12 month medical certificate
requirement for drivers aged 75 and over
- develop public education resources, including a handbook
and communication activities to target older drivers, their
friends, family and medical practitioners to help them make
safe decisions about their mobility.
• Continue to install flashing light signs at school zones as part
of the government’s $10 million commitment to roll out flashing
lights to more than 300 schools over four years (2012–16).
• Review the outcomes of the evaluation of Queensland’s
Graduated Licensing System and develop options for further
• Develop a framework to evaluate Queensland’s alcohol
ignition interlock program and commence data collection for
the evaluation.
• Implement stronger vehicle impoundment provisions for high
risk offenders.
Queensland Road Safety Action Plan 2013–2015, Transport and Main Roads
• Investigate and consider best practice drink driving education
programs for first-time low-level drink driving offenders.
• Investigate short-term interventions including immediate
licence and registration suspensions for high risk offences
such as distracted driving (e.g. using a mobile phone while
driving) and non-restraint use.
• Undertake analysis of drug test results to gain improved
insight on drug involvement in crashes to assist in future
policy development.
• Promote the benefits of refresher courses for motorcycle riders
who return to riding after a break.
• Support learner driver mentor programs that help learner
drivers who don’t have a supervising driver or vehicle to gain
the driving experience they need to apply for a P1 licence.
• Trial a program to assist drivers in remote indigenous
communities to obtain a licence. This includes a new learning
resource to help reinforce key road rules and safe driving
• Implement a new national heavy vehicle electronic work diary
and enhanced advanced fatigue management regulations.
• Review chain of responsibility legislation to strengthen
requirements for all parties in the transport chain to reduce
heavy vehicle speeding, fatigue and mass non-compliance.
• Trial innovative and cost-effective level crossing safety
technologies to improve driver behaviour at rail level crossings.
• Undertake public education activities focussing on the
effects of distracting technologies such as mobile phones,
headphones and portable devices.
• Partner with the Centre for Accident Research and Road
Safety – Queensland to conduct further evaluation of the
‘Three Steps to Safer Riding’ program.
The Queensland Government cannot reduce
the road toll alone. Strong community
partnerships are critical for delivering the
outcomes of this action plan.
There are two main components involved in enhancing the impact of the actions outlined in this plan and building Queensland’s
capacity over the long term: community ownership and engagement, and research, data and evaluation.
Priority actions
• Provide over $6 million per year from the Camera Detected
Offence Program to deliver a three year social change strategy to
improve transport safety in Queensland. This will include:
developing social marketing campaigns and strategies to
target high risk behaviours and key risk groups such as
young drivers
engaging and building partnerships with the community,
industry, business and other stakeholders to encourage
involvement, ownership and dialogue about road safety
• Conduct an annual community road safety perceptions and
attitudes survey to identify community attitudes to major road
safety issues and identify any significant changes in attitudes,
perceptions and behaviour compared with previous years.
• Invest $2 million per year from the Camera Detected Offence
Program to establish a community road safety fund to allow
community groups to apply for funding to assist with the
operation of their local road safety education and awareness
programs and road crash injury rehabilitation programs.
• Provide $4.5 million per year from the Camera Detected Offence
Program to Queensland Health to support the purchase of
blood and blood products used in the treatment of victims of
road trauma.
• Provide $1.62 million from the Camera Detected Offence
Program over three years and work in partnership with
Queensland Health and RACQ to expand the Prevent Alcohol and
Risk-related Trauma in Youth (PARTY) injury awareness program.
• Provide $480,000 from the Camera Detected Offence Program
over three years to expand RACQ’s Docudrama Program across
the state, to educate Queensland senior high school students
about the potential risks of travelling in a vehicle as both drivers
and passengers.
• Deliver national heavy vehicle safety campaigns coordinated
across all Australian states and territories by the National Heavy
Vehicle Regulator.
• Work in partnership with industry stakeholders to develop an
action plan to improve heavy vehicle safety.
• Make crash data more available to Queenslanders through the
implementation of a flexible and contemporary road traffic crash
reporting system.
• Work with local governments to increase their focus on road
safety and assist them to develop local strategies and action
• Provide active support for the Driver Reviver Program at rest
stops throughout the state, to promote safe driving habits
among for long distance drivers and help motorists arrive safely
at their destinations.
• Build and enhance Queensland’s available road safety
knowledge base by undertaking research to support policy
development. In 2013/14, the program will include
investigation of:
potential incentives for safe driving
current driver education and training trends and evidence
of effectiveness
crashes involving young drivers
best practice guidelines for learner driver mentor programs
driving at unsafe headway distances and tailgating, to
develop possible enforcement activity to reduce the number
of rear-end crashes.
• Lead and participate in a range of Austroads projects such as
an investigation of options for rehabilitation in alcohol interlock
programs, a review of blood/breath alcohol concentration limits,
and road safety in disadvantaged groups.
• Encourage community involvement to contribute to road safety,
including the promotion of existing mechanisms (e.g. promoting
the 13HOON hotline to report drivers performing dangerous,
reckless or anti-social behaviour on our roads).
13 QGov (13 74 68)
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