Can we record our first back-to-back fatality-free Easters?

6 April, 2023

Ahead of a wet Easter weekend on South Australian roads, RAA is reminding drivers that one small loss of concentration behind the wheel could turn their dream holiday into a nightmare.

Crash data analysed by RAA has revealed that 38 people have tragically lost their lives on South Australian roads during the Easter period (Thursday – Monday) since 2000. More than 60 per cent of these lives lost have been on high-speed roads of at least 80km/hr.

RAA’s Charles Mountain said, despite the wet weather forecast for the weekend, he hoped SA drivers could repeat the last year’s Easter road safety efforts, which was the first fatality-free Easter since 2017.

“With tens of thousands of drivers set to hit our regional roads in wet weather this weekend, we are pleading with them all to stay focused whenever they’re behind the wheel,” Mr Mountain said.

“Since 1995, there have only been five fatality-free Easter weekends on our roads, and we haven’t recorded back-to-back fatality-free Easters.

“RAA wants nothing more than to see our first back-to-back road fatality-free Easter weekends, despite the wet conditions which will bring more challenging driving conditions.

“We know this has been a horrific start to the year on our roads – with 41 lives lost compared with just 19 at the same time last year – but every time we drive we have the chance to make safe, positive decisions.

“We should always avoid distractions, take regular rest breaks and be in the right frame of mind to drive.

“If you’re driving in the wet, please drive to the conditions, leave a safe gap between your car and the vehicle in front, and use your headlights whenever appropriate.”

It comes as figures recently analysed by RAA also show 2750 people were caught tailgating in 2022.

Mr Mountain also said stopping distances blew out by around 30 per cent when the road surface is wet.

“A recent RAA study found that a car travelling at 80km/hr required an 88-metre stopping distance in the wet, compared with just 64 metres when it’s dry*,” he said.

“It can take an even longer distance to stop if your tyres are worn, so please check your tyre tread before hitting the road in the wet this weekend.”