TRC backing Qld Road Safety Week awareness programs

TOOWOOMBA Regional Council (TRC) is adding its support to Queensland Road Safety Week (August 22-28) by backing calls for the community to 'speak up for road safety'.

Toowoomba Region Mayor Paul Antonio said Council fully endorsed the safety week programs and messages organised and delivered by the Queensland Government (Department of Transport and Main Roads - DTMR) and Queensland Police Service (QPS) and all support agencies.

Mayor Antonio said residents needed to consider their own attitude and behaviour every time they were behind the wheel or were out on a bike or walking.

"The combined efforts of all the major authorities can help focus attention on road safety for every member of the community," Mayor Antonio said.

"It is frustrating and incredibly sad to hear how so many traffic accidents were the result of some error or inattention that more than likely was preventable.

"The week's activities in schools and across the community are another way to ensure the safe driving message reaches as many people as possible.

"These events foster an important sense of shared responsibility for road safety.

"Our greatest hope is that the messages extend far beyond this week and become long-term reminders for a change in community attitudes."

TRC Deputy Mayor and Infrastructure Services Committee chair Cr Carol Taylor said improving road infrastructure and promoting road safety were among the most important functions and services provided by Council's Infrastructure Services group.

"The Toowoomba region is continuing to experience strong growth with new developments and housing estates coming on the market in addition to new businesses and the construction of major infrastructure projects," Cr Taylor said.

"With this growth comes a greater demand on our road system.

"Council is in the process of preparing its new five-year Regional Road Safety Strategy, which principally is aimed at significantly reducing the road toll in our region.

"Road safety isn't simply the responsibility of one road user group.

"We need to work together to reduce road trauma.

"Everybody who uses the road network, as a driver, rider, passenger or pedestrian, must play a part in keeping our roads safe."

In the past year, Council has worked closely with different groups on a number of ongoing road safety and education programs, including Fatality Free Friday.

Apart from links with DTMR and QPS, Cr Taylor said Council worked closely with the Rotary Youth Driver Awareness education program (RYDA) and the Police Citizen's Youth Club to host school road safety education for students across the region.

"Each year Council applies for funding through the Black Spot Program that is administered by the Department of Transport and Main Roads (TMR) on behalf of the Australian Government Department of Infrastructure and Regional Development (DIRD)," Cr Taylor said.

"The funding helps address sites identified to have an actual or potential risk for crashes leading to hospital stays and fatalities.

"Council also hosts the Regional Active and Public Transport Advisory committee (RAPTAC), which meets at least quarterly to discuss how to improve transport outcomes including road safety for pedestrians and cyclists.

"All of Council's road construction and maintenance programs take road safety into account for every improvement project constructed and maintenance activity.

"Driver behaviour (and education) is paramount as traffic signs and traffic lights alone don't ensure trouble free motoring.

"Vigilant, courteous drivers and road users play an important part in preventing accidents," Cr Taylor added.

"I urge all road users to please remember the Fatal Five at all times".

• Don't drink and drive or drive under the influence of drugs,
• Don't speed,
• Avoid driving when tired
• Always wear a seat belt,
• Don't text (general inattention).

Queensland Road Safety Week is a Queensland Government initiative, delivered in partnership by the Queensland Department of Transport and Main Roads and the Queensland Police Service.

The RACQ, the Motor Accident Insurance Commission, and the Centre for Accident Research and Road Safety - Queensland (CARRS-Q), are proud supporters of the event.

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