National Road Safety Week: Let’s all get home safe

May 19, 2023

The National Road Safety Week 2023 theme for Friday, May 19 is ‘Let’s all get home safe.’ Acusensus Founder and Managing Director, Alexander Jannink, spoke to SARAH Group – founders of National Road Safety Week – about the importance of the organisation’s ‘Drive So Others Survive’ Campaign.

The ‘Drive So Others Survive!’ campaign is very important in elevating the need to fix the road trauma epidemic. Unfortunately, humans are poor at comprehending the consequences of low-frequency events such as road crashes and need to be repeatedly reminded as to how to correct their driving behaviours to avoid loss of life. Some drivers will respond positively to messaging, education and encouragement, while a large section needs to be reminded and encouraged through lived consequences. Enforcement solutions make consequences more frequent and notable to drivers in a far less destructive way than a crash, injury or death.

A key challenge to improving road safety is our society’s continual treatment of crashes and casualties as an unavoidable cost of mobility, as well as a lack of political courage to support effective interventions. If every driver followed the campaign, our epidemic would be significantly reduced. Enforcement is very effective where widely deployed to change behaviour, unfortunately, its support is substantially undermined by media claims of ‘revenue raising’ and populist positions that illegal behaviours such as speeding should be permitted or ineffectively enforced. We must continue to apply pressure and awareness, to clearly articulate the dangers of behaviours such as distracted driving at all levels, including government, education providers, media, and the general public.

We can promote awareness with stories from both sides – road trauma survivors, as well as stories from those who have been impacted by the loss of friends and family through distracted driving, or who have been responsible for both outcomes, so people can see and hear firsthand how their behaviour may impact others, and themselves, to drive home the message that actions have consequences. These activities can be used to promote the ‘Drive So Others Survive!’ campaign and drive people to make the pledge – and stick to it.

Take the pledge on the SARAH Group’s website today!

Banner image by Acusensus’ Robert Fenlon.