Police urge: End the road toll

The regional road toll has reached 15, following the deaths of three people in less than a week on our roads.

Bundaberg is heading for one of its worst years of fatalities on the roads, with Bundaberg Police at its wits’ end on how to stop, or at least minimise the carnage.

“It’s incredibly frustrating, the number of police resources (particularly manpower) for traffic enforcement is a necessity,” Bundaberg Police Inspector Kevin Guteridge said.

“With these traffic crashes there is one common denominator, and that is driver attitude.

“In every investigation we undertake we consider the road design, vehicle safety and vehicle road worthiness, and the common contributing factor is driver attitude.”

Insp Guteridge said that “one factor”, driver attitude, is also the only one police have absolutely no control over.

He said people need to be careful and drive to the conditions of the road, particularly with 13 of the 15 victims residing in close proximity to where they died.

Insp Guteridge said police had done all they could with road education and enforcement, and it had paid off since the 1970s, where Queensland peaked with a road toll of 638.

“We certainly don’t want to find ourselves back in those (bad old) days,” he said.

“We’ve improved a lot since then.”

The Bundaberg region road toll last year was seven, with this year’s number about to rival the horror year of 2007, when 19 people were killed.

Insp Guteridge said the trend was not simply a Bundaberg one, with Queensland experiencing a bad year on the roads.

The Apple Tree Creek fatality and another in Townsville yesterday brought Queensland’s road toll closer to last year’s total number of road deaths.

There have been 292 deaths on the state’s roads this year and it is likely to climb above last year’s total road fatalities of 299 deaths, with the busy Christmas holiday period still to come.

But despite safety campaigns and police presence constantly reminding drivers to be safe on the roads, the deaths continue.

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