Plea for patience on SA roads this Easter

27 March, 2024

RAA is urging drivers to prioritise safety this Easter long weekend – a period that has seen 39 people lose their lives on SA roads since the year 2000.

In the same period, South Australia has only recorded five fatality-free Easter weekend periods (Thursday – Monday) – the most recent being in 2022 and 2017. Last year, one life was lost on SA roads during the Easter period.

So far this year as of 26 March, 20 people have lost their lives, compared to 38 at the same time last year.

RAA Senior Traffic Engineer Matt Vertudaches urged drivers to avoid the Fatal 5 causes of road trauma.

“Easter is one of the busiest times of the year for family holidays and road trips,” Mr Vertudaches said.

“But with that increased activity on our roads comes the risk of road trauma – as we’ve seen in the crash data for the last 24 years.

“Since 2000 there have been lives lost on 19 out of 24 Easter weekends in South Australia – and we are yet to record back-to-back fatality-free Easter periods in that time.

“We want nothing more than to see no lives lost on our roads this Easter. Key to this will be driving at safe speeds, to the conditions and leaving extra time for our journeys so we can show patience and care to other road users.

“Drivers should remember the Fatal 5 causes of road trauma – distraction, speeding, drugs and alcohol, not wearing a seatbelt and dangerous road users – and do everything they can to avoid them.”

Mr Vertudaches said there were also simple safety checks recommended for drivers before they head away on a road trip.

“RAA recommends booking your car in for a service if it’s been a while before heading on a long trip, and checking the fluid levels in your vehicle are topped up.

“We also recommend checking your tyres – including the spare – and if close to the minimum tread depth of 1.6mm, having these replaced.

“If you’re towing make sure you check over the caravan or trailer, particularly the lights, towing hitch and safety chains before heading off.

“Once you’re on the road, take rest breaks at least every two hours, and whenever you are starting to feel tired. Share the driving load with others where possible and make sure you’re always fully focused on the task of driving.”