Federal assistant infrastructure minister Jamie Briggs.

Positive Trends reported but TWU doubts Government Commitment

Federal assistant infrastructure minister Jamie Briggs.

Federal assistant infrastructure minister Jamie Briggs.

The Transport Workers Union is not too convinced that the government is committed to road safety despite a road trauma report which details positive trends in road safety.

The Road Trauma report may show a positive road safety trend but the TWU is sceptical of the government’s commitment.

The Road Trauma Report was recently released by the Bureau of Infrastructure Transport and Regional Economics (BITRE). The report’s goal is to review the full impact of road trauma and despite the latest report’s positive trends the TWU doesn’t think the government has done enough to improve road safety.

The BITRE report looked at the costs and benefits of various road safety initiatives which according to the report has correlated with a drop in road casualties.

The union questioned the government’s commitment to the nation’s road safety because of its opposition to the Road Safety Remuneration Tribunal (RSRT).

The Road Trauma Report revealed a positive trend, indicating that road fatalities involving trucks was on the decline between 2004 and 2013. The report also points towards the progress that has been made on the National Road Safety Strategy to reduce road casualties by 30 per cent by the year 2020.

The report highlighted the fact that in the last decade, there was a 26 per cent decline in the number of fatal truck crashes involving rigid trucks that happened. Those truck crashes involving articulated trucks also dropped, by at least 36 per cent, according to the report.

According to the Department of Infrastructure, the number of people being killed on Australian roads is down,

“National fatality numbers are now 17.4 per cent lower, putting Australia well on track to achieving its reduction target,” the Department of Infrastructure says.

Read more at: http://www.fullyloaded.com.au

According to an article posted on Fullyloaded.com.au the assistant minister for infrastructure Jamie Briggs’ referral to the 30 per cent reduction target of the National Road Safety Strategy in Parliament is what prompted the response from the Transport Workers Union (TWU).

The Transport Workers Union secretary, Tony Sheldon went on to explain:

“If Jamie Briggs is serious about reducing road deaths further, he must ensure the Road Safety Remuneration Tribunal is kept in place,”

Source: http://www.fullyloaded.com.au

According to Sheldon and the TWU, the reason government ministers are trying to remove the RSRT is because of lobbying by Coles, who are huge donators to the Liberal Party, Sheldon stated,

“Coles, and its parent company Wesfarmers have delivered $2.1 million in Liberal Party donations in the past financial year,” Sheldon says.

“The TWU will continue to campaign until the Government drops its Coles sponsored attack on road safety and locks in its full support for the Road Safety Remuneration Tribunal.”

Source: http://www.fullyloaded.com.au

Road safety experts apparently submitted over 400 suggestions for the report but it was eventually narrowed down to four main ones which according to the report include:

investment in infrastructure, better intersections, a comprehensive mobile phone strategy, and better technology in the form of electronic stability control and autonomous emergency braking.

Source: http://www.fullyloaded.com.au