101 lives lost on our roads, hundreds more torn apart

19 November, 2023

As South Australia records more than 100 lives lost on our roads this year, the state’s peak motoring body has issued a warning, saying we could be on track for the worst year on our roads in more than a decade – urging motorists to take more care behind the wheel. 

So far this year (as of 19 November) 101 lives have tragically been lost on our roads, with more than 735 people sustaining serious injuries – compared with 71 and 652 respectively for the whole of 2022.

RAA Chief Executive Officer Nick Reade said it had been horror weekend on South Australian roads amidst one of the worst years on our roads in more than a decade.

“This is sadly shaping up to be one of, if not the worst year on our roads for more a decade,” Mr Reade said.

“Our hearts go out to the victims of road trauma, and also their families, friends and communities which are often torn apart by these sickening crashes.”

Mr Reade urged motorists to take more care behind the wheel.

“When people get behind the wheel drunk, fatigued, choose not to wear a seatbelt or allow themselves to be distracted while driving – they’re not just putting their own life at risk, but also their passengers and other road users,” Mr Reade said.

“Motorists have a serious responsibility to look after themselves and everyone else on the roads.

“In the lead up to the holiday period and Christmas – we’re urging everyone to remember what’s at stake when they get behind the wheel.”  

Senior Manager of Safety and infrastructure Charles Mountain said tragically, almost every age group and type of road user is up on not only last year but the five-year average in terms of lives lost.

“With current safety technology in vehicles and what we now know about road safety, this should not be happening,” Mr Mountain said.

“While typically more lives are lost on our regional roads, this year there has also been a large increase in lives lost in metropolitan Adelaide (up by around 75% on the five-year YTD average).

“This is compared to regional roads, where there has been about a 7% increase in lives lost on the five-year YTD average.

“This is particularly the case for cyclist deaths, which are triple the five-year YTD average in metropolitan Adelaide – while motorcyclist deaths are up around 50% this year too.”