The annual economic cost of road crashes in Australia is enormous—estimated at $27 billion per annum—and the social impacts are devastating.
Since record keeping commenced in 1925, there have been over 180,000 deaths on Australia's roads. However, road trauma levels have declined substantially over the last four decades, despite considerable population growth and a threefold increase in registered motor vehicles. During this period, the number of road deaths per year has fallen from 3,798 deaths in 1970 to 1,309 in 2012.
In Australia’s federal system, government responsibilities for road safety vary across jurisdictions:
The Australian Government is responsible for regulating safety standards for new vehicles, and for allocating infrastructure resources, including for safety, across the national highway and local road networks.
State and territory governments are responsible for funding, planning, designing and operating the road network; managing vehicle registration and driver licensing systems; and regulating and enforcing road user behaviour.
Local governments have responsibilities for funding, planning, designing and operating the road networks in their local areas.
The Department of Infrastructure and Transport has a range of functions that support the Australian Government’s role in road safety. These include: administering vehicle safety standards for new vehicles, administering the National Black Spot Program and other road funding, administering the keys2drive and Seatbelts for Regional School Buses programs, producing national road safety statistics, and coordinating the National Road Safety Strategy 2011–2020.
Seatbelts on Regional School Buses
On 10 December 2012, the Parliamentary Secretary for Transport and Infrastructure, the Hon Catherine King MP, opened Round 10 of the Seatbelts on Regional School Buses funding program. Full details of the program including eligibility criteria, key dates and application forms are now available.
National Road Safety Strategy 2011–2020 Implementation Status Report
On 9 November 2012, the Standing Council on Transport and Infrastructure considered the latest progress report for the National Road Safety Strategy 2011–2020, showing that considerable activity is underway across all areas of the strategy.
Driveway Safety: are your kids at risk?
A Driveway Safety brochure with advice about keeping children safe around vehicles at home is now available for download in 8 non-English languages. The brochure was launched by Parliamentary Secretary for Infrastructure and Transport, the Hon Catherine King MP, on 24 August at the National Road Safety Forum at Parliament House in Canberra.
This page provides links to information addressing road safety. Please follow the links below for details on the topic of interest.
The Strategy sets out nationally agreed objectives, targets and priorities for road safety improvement in Australia. It is an initiative of the Australian Transport Council.
The National Road Safety Forum was an initiative of the Australian Government, convened by the Parliamentary Secretary for Infrastructure and Transport, the Hon Catherine King MP.
The Australian Government is supporting the Decade of Action for Road Safety.
The brochure Driveway Safety: Are your kids at risk? provides advice about keeping children safe around vehicles at home.
The Government is funding the Australian Automobile Association to manage an important and innovative road safety initiative—keys2drive—which will provide a free driving lesson to learner drivers and their parents.
As part of the Australian Government's commitment to making regional and rural roads safer for all Australians, the Seatbelts on Regional School Buses Program will continue for a further four years, from 2012–13 to 2015–16.
The Good Gear Guide booklet provides advice about motorcycle safety equipment.
Follow this link to view all road safety education material, research and analysis reports, statistical information and brochures.
Follow this link to view a range of statistical information relating to Australian road fatalities produced by the Bureau of Infrastructure, Transport and Regional Economics (BITRE).
The department encourages collaborative efforts around Australia to improve road safety for Indigenous Australians.
In December 2004, the Australian, Victorian and NSW Governments jointly announced plans to develop and trial a post-licence driver education program in partnership with the Federal Chamber of Automotive Industries (FCAI), the NSW-based Insurance Australia Group (IAG) and the Royal Automobile Club of Victoria (RACV).
The Department commissions an annual series of national surveys on Australian road safety issues, known as the Survey of Community Attitudes to Road Safety.
This link takes you to a list of Bulletins, Reports and detailed Vehicle Safety information.