Road safety is a national problem that matters to every single one of us. It’s not solely a government problem, nor solely a transport problem.
There have been over 190,000 deaths on Australia’s roads since record keeping began in 1925. We have come a long way to drive down road trauma fatalities substantially over the last four decades – falling from 3,798 deaths in 1970 to around 1,188 deaths in 2022. This is despite considerable population growth and a threefold increase in registered motor vehicles during this time.
Office of Road Safety
The Australian Government takes road safety seriously, establishing the Office of Road Safety in July 2019, to support the commitment of all Australian governments to a goal of zero road crash deaths and serious injuries by 2050 (Vision Zero).
The Office of Road Safety coordinates national efforts to improve road safety outcomes for all Australians through the National Road Safety Strategy in collaboration with state, territory and local governments, as well as industry and community stakeholders.
It is also the primary policy adviser to Australian Government ministers on matters related to delivering safer roads, vehicles, speeds, and people.
Learn more about the National Road Safety Strategy.
Road safety in Australia
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.
In addition to the work of the Office of Road Safety, the Department of Infrastructure, Transport, Regional Development, Communications and the Arts performs 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 safety funding and producing national road safety statistics.
Road safety data
National Road Safety Data Hub
The National Road Safety Data Hub is developing a nationally available road safety data collection to support efforts by all Australian governments to achieve their shared Vision Zero targets by 2050.
The Data Hub will also report against safety outcomes of national road infrastructure projects. In time, data and insights will also support road safety research and inform the identification of emerging road safety issues and appropriate countermeasures.
View latest national road safety insights and data.
The Bureau of Infrastructure, Transport and Regional Economics (BITRE)
The Bureau of Infrastructure, Transport and Regional Economics (BITRE) provides economic analysis, research and statistics on infrastructure, transport and regional development issues to inform both Australian Government policy development and wider community understanding.
View latest national road safety statistics.