Every ten years federal, state and territory governments agree on a set of priorities to reduce road user fatalities and serious injuries. WalkSydney has submitted to the consultation and our full submission is available online. In summary our main points are:
- Deploy 30 km/h safe street neighbourhood zones: The strategy needs to be more explicit about how a 30 km/h speed limit in residential, school and certain commercial zones will significantly save lives and reduce serious injuries of all road users, consistent with the aim of the strategy, and devise strategy to make this speed limit reality.
- Prioritise vulnerable road users. As almost all road users are classified as pedestrians at some point in their journey, the strategy should acknowledge the importance and significance of specific actions to improve the safety and situation of vulnerable road users in 2021-2030.
- Change the law / road rules to improve the safety of vulnerable road users. The strategy does not address how safety for vulnerable road users should be better enforced / codified into the Road Rules. This is a significant omission.
- Stop victim blaming: A road fatality and serious injury is most commonly the result of a collision with a vehicle. Blaming the victim such as a pedestrian for an injury caused by a vehicle driver excuses the driver from being responsible for the operation of the vehicle. Road rules should codify that the responsibility for road use rises with capacity to cause harm.
- Integrate with infrastructure funding strategies: Provision should be made in the infrastructure and road spend for specific routes for pedestrians that are separated and protected from potential vehicle conflict.
- Plan for new technologies. A 10 year strategy must look towards upcoming technology, to anticipate, allow, and account for the differences in road safety of our future road configuration.
WalkSydney gives pedestrians a voice. Join us! Membership information can be found here.