3 minute read
Following the tragic loss of three road workers in a span of four weeks, the Victorian government is pushing for the recognition of road workers as humans in their latest digital awareness campaign.
The campaign – Humans on the Road – highlights how road workers and first responders are everyday people. Just like all of us, they want to get home safely after a day’s work. Five short videos were released as part of the digital campaign, each detailing the challenges of working on the roads.
Watch paramedic Dani’s story below.
Watch night road worker Nick’s story.
This happens daily.
In October, a nurse and an elderly patient lost their lives when a truck crashed into the back of the ambulance they were in. The emergency vehicle was stopped at a temporary traffic light in a construction area when a truck failed to stop, causing the loss of two lives.
Two separate hit-and-run incidents in Queensland left two road workers dead and one critically injured within one month. In late October, a Mackay traffic controller died on the job in a hit-and-run. Another similar incident in Carrum Downs left one road worker fighting for their life and another dead.
As Dani and Nick say in the videos, slowing down can save lives.
Slowing down and driving to conditions when passing a construction site – whether there are people or not – or when passing emergency service vehicles can prevent the loss of innocent lives. Not only does this keep us and others safe, slowing down will also ensure you don’t cop a fine for failing to adhere to the rules.
In Victoria, Western Australia, Tasmania and New South Wales, it is the law to slow down to 40km/h when approaching or passing emergency vehicles. On NSW roads that have a speed limit of 90km/h or more, drivers must slow down to a reasonable safe speed, not necessarily 40km/h. In South Australia, drivers passing emergency vehicles must slow down to 25km/h.
Drivers in all states must also adhere to the speed limits outlined in construction areas.
Road workers and first responders are not the only ones that face risks on the job. Occupational drivers who drive as part of their jobs face the same risks. Earlier this year a sixth food delivery worker was killed on the job. And as we head into the holiday season, posties in some states will be delivering well into twilight to meet parcel demands. Truckies are likely to be in the same boat with increased parcel demands (more on truckies HERE).
The latest data shows that 41% of reported work fatalities in 2020 were vehicle collisions – by far the greatest cause of deaths in the workplace. Work-related road fatalities are a serious issue, we all need to do our bit so that everyone gets home safely.
To find out more about our programs click HERE.
Get involved in the conversation by following us on: