Safety first as SA students start to head on holidays

8 December, 2023

RAA is urging South Aussies to show care over the summer holiday period, as crash data shows metropolitan vulnerable road user deaths have already doubled this year compared to 2022.

The majority of South Australia’s private schools are finishing Term 4 either today or early next week, ahead of the official end of the public school term next Friday, prompting an RAA reminder as roads get busier.

Crash data for 2023 shows that there has been twice as many vulnerable road user (cyclist, motorcyclist or pedestrian) fatalities in metropolitan Adelaide this year (28) compared with the whole of 2022 (14).

It makes this the equal worst year for vulnerable road user deaths in Adelaide since 2001.

RAA Senior Manager Safety and Infrastructure said the summer holidays were an important time to make safe decisions around busy roads.

“As the school year winds down, we’re reminding all road users to show care to one another when they share the road this summer,” Mr Mountain said.

“While it can be a busy and distracting time of year with Christmas shopping, end-of-year events and trips away, there’s never any excuse for being distracted or impatient when you’re on the road.

“Getting angry at other road users can result in dangerous behaviour in the form or road rage which increases the level of risk to everyone.

“This year on our roads has been absolutely tragic and not least for vulnerable road users – cyclist, motorcyclist and pedestrian fatalities have all increased significantly in 2023.

“We’re urging all road users to reflect on the responsibility they have to make safe decisions whenever they’re behind the wheel or sharing the road.

Mr Mountain said that while a lot of students had finished for the year, there was still another week left for the majority of public school students.

“Many school zones will still be in use next week, so even if your school has finished for the year, don’t assume there won’t be students using pedestrian crossings at other locations.

“Look out for flashing amber lights and orange flags that indicate school crossings are still in operation.

“For parents walking with young children, it’s important to hold their hand and encourage safe behaviours around the roads.

“Set a good example, and remember to ‘stop, look, listen, and think’ when crossing a road – including at designated crossing points.

“Our advice to drivers is to leave a few minutes earlier than needed and look out for one another, especially vulnerable road users such as walkers, riders and children.”