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VIC The Age - Debate over state's road fatality figures

Discussion in 'Politics, Laws, Government & Insurance' at netrider.net.au started by Sir Ride Alot, Jan 23, 2012.

  1. The infighting begins. In the red corner the TAC and in the other red corner MUARC.

    Its early days but so far this year the Victorian road toll is up around 40 percent on last year and speed is still the topic even though lower speed limits have clearly failed.

    Checkout the highlighted one kilometre per hour quote. Surely it's got to be a contender for quote of the year.

    Debate over state's road fatality figures
    Mark Russell January 22, 2012

    THE safety of Victoria's roads has improved even more than the official road toll suggests, according to new Transport Accident Commission data.

    As experts consider the next step in driving down the state's road toll, new figures obtained by The Sunday Age show a larger drop in fatalities when deaths are weighted by population.

    Last year's toll of 288 was the equal lowest in almost 60 years. But the TAC figures, which calculate deaths per 100,000 people, show the proportion of fatalities has fallen.

    In 1970, 1061 people died in Victoria's highest-ever road toll. There were 30.8 deaths per 100,000 people, compared with 5.12 deaths per 100,000 last year.

    The release of the figures has sparked debate among experts over whether they are a more useful measure of fatalities or if the raw number of deaths has a greater impact.

    The TAC's senior manager of road safety, John Thompson, said examining proportional figures provided a clearer picture of what was happening and whether safety campaigns were working.

    ''It's telling us that despite the increasing population and number of cars, the road toll is continuing to drop,'' he said.

    The 2011 provisional toll of 288 (the toll will be finalised on February 1) was the same as 2010's, despite the state's population increasing by 84,000 and 86,000 more cars being on the road.

    The Monash University Accident Research Centre's Dr Bruce Corben said while road safety agencies and governments used deaths per capita to determine if progress was being made, he believed it was the number of Victorians dying on the roads each year that was most important.

    ''This should be regarded as the primary measure of how well the system works, especially if we are striving to eliminate death and severe injury from a system that is so heavily relied upon,'' he said.'

    With the official aim to reduce the toll to 237 by 2017, police have been analysing the 2011 toll to determine what needs to be done to further reduce fatalities in Victoria, where 4.19 million vehicles share the road.

    ''One of our key focus areas for 2012 will continue to be around speed - particularly around changing driver attitudes to the dangers of low-level speeding,'' Deputy Commissioner Kieran Walshe said.

    ''Research suggests that if all drivers dropped one kilometre per hour off their average speed, we could see around 15 lives saved every year and up to 300 serious injuries avoided.''

    Mr Thompson said the toll would also fall dramatically if more cars were fitted with interlock technology preventing drink drivers from starting their cars or if someone in the vehicle was not wearing a seatbelt. About 50 people die every year because they are not wearing seatbelts, and 50 drink drivers are killed.

    Another initiative to save 50 more lives a year involves encouraging young people to drive safer cars equipped with electronic stability control and curtain air bags. Dr Corben also believes more roundabouts will save lives, as 40 per cent of deaths and serious injuries occur at intersections.

    Roads Minister Terry Mulder said the government was considering tougher measures to tackle the toll, including mandatory interlocks for convicted drink drivers, reducing the blood-alcohol limit and extending the ban on P-platers using hands-free mobile phones.

    Read more: http://www.theage.com.au/victoria/d...ity-figures-20120121-1qbgl.html#ixzz1kGvUwLXS

    Attached Files:

  2. So the agencies that stand to gain power, funding and influence through increased enforcement and penalty regimes want more enforcement and more penalties? Who'd a thunk it.

    TAC, on the other hand, have nothing to gain from measures that don't work...:-k
  3. I vaguely remember a story from the USA from years ago about a car having a seatbelt lockout fitted, Woman was being chased got into her car and the car wouldnt start because of the seatbelt, she was brutally ****d. It was quite a few years ago so I'm not sure on details.

    Drunk drivers already have interlocks fitted. Doesnt stop them using someone elses car.
  4. 2101roadtoll_729px-420x0.

    Thought it deserved reposting. Can't help but notice the flattening slope with the ever increasing focus on speed.
  5. The lower you go the harder it is to continue the trend, but I'd want to see the same thing against improvements in car safety. Things like improved suspension, ABS, traction control, better side impact protection.

    The chart alone says nothing about how effective those policing measures are, or if they are effective at all when compared to improved vehicle safety technologies.

    I'd like to see the methodology used to work out that about 1km average speed reduction would save 15 lives. Doesn't sound realistic at all.
  6. I don't think the constant harping on about the numbers does anything to help, whether it's raw numbers or numbers per anything. Road deaths are somethng that happens to other people. Nobody gets in their car and thinks 'oh I must drive slower today because more peope were killed this month than the same time last year' They just get on and do the same old thing they do every day and every year, and just occasionally have an 'oh ****' moment.

    I DO think the numbers have merit when they are analysed for root cause like we try here, but otherwise they are just soundbites for the press.
    • Like Like x 1
  7. it would be interesting to overplot this graph with the introduction dates of car safety features - airbags, ANCAP crash ratings etc etc.

    if I was being pessimistic I'd curve fit a straight line from the peak to todays' numbers and say that none of the government actions have had any effect....
  8. You could not be more right. Behaviour change comes through training, and nothing else.
    • Like Like x 1
  9. Duplicate thread...
  10. Thought I'd also include this article from TAC in regards to the number of speeding tickets issued.
    It has the usual flawed rubbish..

    Out of all those booked, how many were for a few k's over.
    Err I was one with a 75 in a 70 zone.
    In a nut shell thought I was in 80 zone.
    Twas a rural type of road, clear and straight.
    It was the 1st of 4 times thru there that morning as I'd promised kids quick moto ride each that morning.
    Was an area I was unfamiliar with and came across 3 speed sign changes within less than 100 meters and after passing the last sign, was thinking if the last was a 70 or 80 then made the mistake of looking down at my gps which said it was an 80 zone.
    Looks like one of those areas that have been lowered.
    Half a k on, came across another 70 sign and though oh limit must have been changed here.
    They had a camera there and got pinned the first time I went thru never once did I notice a camera the 4 times I went thru.

    So am I one of those that need to be ashamed of myself..
    Is this how they're going to make it socially unacceptable?
    It's done more to discredit and rubbish mine and most views towards the dumb arse money grabbing authorities.
    All of this is nothing new really.

    Guys we really have some big issues with the beige mentality within TAC, MURAC and governments supporting this under the pretence of safety...
    Both political parties are together on all of this so our options are nay... :p

    TAC Slams Summer Speedsters

  11. What utter rubbish.

    I think Bruce Corben doesn't understand the data behind his own research
  12. Or just the amount of accidents as opposed to fatalities, would be interesting.
  13. There is no way that 30% of all road fatalities have objectively been shown to be due to exceeding the speed limit. Police reports are not that scientific and inappropriate speed is listed many times as a crash cause however, that doesn't differentiate as to whether the speed limit was exceeded.

    The TAC will NOT succeed in making exceeding a speed limit as socially unnacceptable as DUI - the public just aren't that gullible.
  14. Inappropriate speed is also marked as a cause any time the driver was over the speed limit.
    Regardless of wether it was actually relevant to the crash.
    You could be driving down the highway at 120 and be hit by a meteorite and police would chalk that up to speeding.
  15. I'm curious. How many deaths are attributed to a BAC between the new proposed limit, and the current legal limit? For eg, the current limit is 0.05. If they want 0.03 (for eg), how many deaths are the result of BAC >0.03 and <0.05. That would be the only relevant data.

    It would make ZERO difference to people already over the limit, and ZERO to those under the new limit.
  16. Reminds me of the time the cameras were turned off on the Western Ring Road due to various "issues".

    When they were turned back on and the number of accidents and fatalities dropped to next to nothing they all claimed "the cameras did it" but they failed to mention that at the same time they also finished installing Wire Rope Barriers down the middle of the median so preventing trucks from having head ons with on coming vehicles which til then was the major cause of fatal collisions on the WRR.
  17. They're good at that I went to a teach your kid to drive thing run by the local council.

    They said that increasing the hours requird from 500 to 100 had reduced p plater deaths by x percent, so I asked how they knew, all they said was they year after the number was smaller. they couldn't tell me what the overall figures were or basically anything else.

    When I said correlation doesn't equal causation they looked at me blankly,..
  18. The commonly accepted figure in most developed countries is around 5-10% (ie. where the accident would probably not have happened at all, had the primary contributor been travelling slower).

    It comes down to the methodology of the reporting. VicPol prioritises certain offenses highly as contributory factors, and ignores many legal (but causative) behaviours and circumstances (guess where they learned that trick).
  19. I also see the TAC attempting to duck and weave away from the road toll to avoid accountability.

    robsalv championed and educated us all about the percentage method of measuring the road toll and most people would agree it is a far superior method. The TAC on the other hand measured its own performance against the actual road toll and now that it isn’t working for them they attempt to shift the spotlight away. The road toll is their own yardstick not ours.

    Ted Baillieu has no option but to sack the TAC board and reduce the amount of money Victorians pay in insurance premiums. He did this with the ambulance service.
  20. I had a puncture today way out in nowhere. Taking ten minutes to change my tyre dropped my average speed from roughly 160 to 155 km/h. I saved all you netcrashers your serious accidents for this year.
    • Like Like x 1