Zero deaths on Australian roads for one day.

That is the annual Fatality Free Friday objective for today’s (May 28) national road safety campaign.

Toowoomba Regional Council today reaffirmed the road safety pledge with the Queensland Police Service, the Queensland Fire and Emergency Service, the Queensland Ambulance Service, the Department of Transport and Main Roads and community road safety education organisations at Grand Central.

Toowoomba Region Mayor Paul Antonio said Council was pleased to renew the pledge and determined to raise road safety awareness and work toward saving lives on our roads.

“Fatality Free Friday sharpens our focus on collective and individual responsibilities for all road users – including pedestrians, cyclists, public transport passengers, motorcyclists and motorists – so we’re very proud to be supporting this initiative,” Mayor Antonio said.

“We lose too many people to road crashes every year, and we must do everything we can do to improve this. It starts with every single one of us being aware of others on our roads.

“These are unspeakable tragedies that occur too frequently. Apart from the grief felt by victims’ families and friends, it is estimated that the annual financial and social cost of traffic crashes across the Toowoomba Region road network is approximately $80 million.

“While the target is to have a fatality free Friday, the campaign is more than just a single day.

“Ultimately, we are aiming for a longer-term community change to ensure that every day is fatality free across Australia.”

TRC Infrastructure Services Committee chair Cr Carol Taylor said there was no excuse for taking risks on or around roads.

Cr Taylor said all road users must remember to give their total attention to the road and surrounding conditions on every journey.

fatalityfreefridayduo2021“There is no room for complacency. Please remember to avoid taking risks behind the wheel as you not only endanger your own life, but the lives of your passengers, other motorists and road users around you,” Cr Taylor said.

“Council is committed to improving road safety through better engineering on our road projects and advocating for road safety education.

“Council continues to implement the actions from our Road Safety Strategy 2019-23. The document outlines our commitment to achieve zero road deaths and serious injuries across our Region.

“Our strategy serves as an action plan that helps Council, our key stakeholders and the community participate in road safety initiatives across the Region.

“Council is developing safer transport networks, with a top priority on heavy vehicle route infrastructure upgrades.

“Council will continue to apply for available road funding grants, including allocations under the federally funded Black Spot program, which delivers projects that reduce the incidence and severity of road traffic crashes. Council is investigating several sites that could be considered for funding applications in the coming financial year.

“In the past year Council, together with our road safety partners, has taken action to help our community to be safer on the road. Some of these actions include:
• Conducted speed limit reviews at: Wyreema-Cambooya Road (speed limit increased from 80km/h to 100km/h); Mackenzie Street, Mt Lofty (reduced speed limit from 60km/h to 50km/h); Kleinton Road (reduced speed limit from 80km/h to 60km/h) and Heinemann Road (increased speed limit from 50km/h to 60km/h),

• Installed vehicle-activated speed signs that warn drivers they are exceeding the speed limit, or travelling too fast to negotiate corners or intersections at: West Street at the West/Mort/Jellicoe streets intersection; Kingsthorpe-Haden Road and Yalangur-Lilyvale Road intersection (on both the northern and western approaches),

• Installed vehicle-activated warning signs (no right turn) Herries Street, Toowoomba at Prescott Street; a new sign will be installed at West Street near O’Quinn Street in the coming week,

• Working with the police to discuss road safety with heavy vehicle operators,

• Collaborating with the Department of Transport and Main Roads Road Safety team and Education Queensland to help schools with parking signage for stop, drop and go zones. Council recently completed installing traffic signals at the South-Burton Street intersection upgrade that is next to Harristown State High School, Harristown State School and Concordia Lutheran College, and

• We are working with the State Government to increase safety around schools in our Region.”

TRC Infrastructure Services portfolio leader and Regional Active and Public Transport Advisory Committee chair Cr Melissa Taylor said Council was focusing on pedestrian safety through community education and better management of high pedestrian activity areas.

Cr Taylor said Council reviewed ways in which it could help vulnerable road users, especially pedestrians.

“This work provides additional time for pedestrians to start walking before vehicles have a green light, or in some cases the vehicles are held while the pedestrian movement is completed,” Cr Taylor said.

“Council also supports and promotes a range of road safety initiatives such as National Road Safety Week, National Walk Safely to School Day, Coffee with a Cop and today’s Fatality Free Friday event.”

Background: Fatality Free Friday is an Australian Road Safety Foundation community effort targeted to achieve a fatality free Friday for one day across the whole country.

Since its inception in 2007, the campaign has continued to expand its operation and is recognised as Australia’s only national, community-based road safety program.

Statistically, the highest number of deaths occur on Australian roads on Fridays with 21% of all road deaths occurring on Fridays. The campaign is more than a single day. While the target is to have a fatality free Friday, ultimately it aims for longer term community change in driver behaviour.

To date, more than 482,387 road safety pledges have been signed.

For more information about Fatality Free Friday please visit: https://arsf.com.au/fatality-free-friday-2/

Caption: Superintendent Warren Buckley (QFES, left) joins Acting Superintendent Paul James (QPS), TRC Infrastructure Services Committee chair Cr Carol Taylor, Superintendent Glen Maule (QAS Executive manager operations, Darling Downs) and Toowoomba Region Mayor Paul Antonio to stress road safety messages to highlight Fatality Free Friday.

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