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Call for zero road toll by 2050 in bold plan to ‘halt the carnage’ on our roads

The Royal Australasian College of Surgeons is calling for a $3 billion annual injection of funds to “halt the carnage” on the roads.

A 12-point plan to bring down the road toll to zero by 2050 has been unveiled in the recommendations of an inquiry into the National Road Safety Strategy.

Dr John Crozier, chair of the trauma committee of the Royal Australian College of Surgeons, said $30 billion a year is spent treating people injured on our roads.

Tom Elliott questioned if a zero road toll was possible.

“It’s not an unrealistic goal, the inquiry echoes multiple views of many stakeholders, all of them reasonable, we shouldn’t see deaths in any of our major CBDs and the highways that connect the major metro centres should not see deaths by 2030,” he said.

“This is a realistic call to arms to close off the silent epidemic which is road injury, hospitalising the equivalent of a country town each year.

“Forty thousand people each year, maimed, many with brain injures, may with badly shattered bones.

“We simply can’t keep that scale of tragedy going.”

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Some of the key points in the strategy include:

  • Establishing a national road safety entity reporting to the Cabinet minister with responsibility for road safety
  • Committing to a minimum $3 billion a year road safety fund
  • Set a vision zero target for 2050 with an interim target of vision zero for all major capital city CBD areas, and high-volume highways by 2030
  • Invest in road safety focused infrastructure, safe system and mobility partnerships with state, territory and local governments that accelerate the elimination of high-risk roads
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