Drive safely these school holidays

As school holidays begin across the country, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Infrastructure, Transport and Regional Development Michael McCormack and Assistant Minister for Road Safety and Freight Transport Scott Buchholz are urging Australians to drive safely on our roads.

Mr McCormack said he recognised the need for Australians to reconnect with loved ones during what has been a challenging year for all.

“While we want all Australians to be able to take a break and enjoy their holidays, it’s important we do it safely by ensuring we drive considerately on our roads,” Mr McCormack said.

“Many Australians have been doing it tough during this unprecedented period and they will be feeling the need to reconnect with family and friends during the school holidays, which will likely see a surge of long distance travel over the break.

“The Australian Government takes road safety seriously, because one death or one crash on our roads is one too many.

“We are continuing to invest in road safety with recent announcements including $8 million towards tackling driver fatigue by upgrading life-saving rest sites staffed by volunteers, some of which will be open these school holidays subject to COVID-19 restrictions.”

Mr Buchholz said even though school holidays are a great opportunity for families to take a break, it is important for motorists to play a role in promoting road safety to ensure everyone makes it to their final destination.

“For drivers it is particularly important to take responsibility for ourselves and our passengers, which includes driving to the conditions, planning ahead and minimising distractions in the car,” Mr Buchholz said.

“Fatigue is one of the leading factors contributing to road crashes causing death and serious injury. So stop, revive and survive these school holidays.

“All motorists need to pay attention to road signage and speed limits and keep an eye out for pedestrians and cyclists.”

Slow down around local paths and playgrounds as there are likely to be kids on bikes exploring new spots. Motorists with children are also reminded to check child restraints and make sure that luggage is appropriately secured without inhibiting visibility for the driver.

“Research indicates that up to 75 per cent of children in cars around Australia have not been properly restrained – so it is vital kids have their seatbelts on and parents have checked their booster seat shoulder height is adjusted correctly.”

The Australian Government is continuing to support councils in delivering road infrastructure, through federally funded local roads programs.

Some of these programs include the Bridges Renewal, Heavy Vehicle Safety and Productivity, Roads to Recovery and the successful Black Spots Program, which has made significant improvements to road safety at identified intersections.

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