Don’t let safety take a holiday this long weekend

6 June, 2024

Drivers are being urged to drive safely ahead of what may be a wet and foggy King’s Birthday weekend – with 184 casualty crashes occurring over the June long weekend between 2018-2022.

In the five-year period to 2022, there were four fatal crashes, 34 serious injury crashes and another 146 minor injury crashes over the winter long weekend.

Preliminary crash data from 2023 shows there were no fatalities over the June long weekend last year – the first fatality-free King’s Birthday weekend since 2020 (serious and minor injury data is not yet available for 2023).

RAA Senior Manager Safety and Infrastructure Charles Mountain urged motorists to drive safely in potentially wet and foggy conditions this weekend.

“Our regional roads and highways are set to be busy this long weekend with people heading away,” Mr Mountain said.

“As this is our only winter long weekend, drivers should keep in mind the increased risks of winter driving – especially with rain and morning fog on the forecast for many areas of the state.

“The most common types of casualty crashes over the June long weekend are rear end and hit fixed object crashes – which is consistent with common crash types when roads are wet.

“To prevent these types of crashes, check your tyres have the minimum tread of 1.5mm before setting off and make sure to leave a gap of at least three seconds between you and the vehicle in front.

“We also see an alarming spike in roll over casualty crashes over this long weekend – there were 21 roll overs in the five-year period which could highlight the risk of excessive speed or distraction.

“If you’re driving through fog, slow down and turn on your fog lights or low beam headlights – not your high beams which can blind other drivers.

“We also need to be extra alert to the presence of pedestrians or cyclists, who may be harder to see at this time of year.

“Remember the Fatal 5 causes of road trauma – distraction, excessive speed, driving under the influence, not wearing a seatbelt and dangerous road user behaviour – to ensure you don’t leave safety at home this weekend.”