Slow Down for Yellow – it could save a life

18 April, 2024

Following a 12-month campaign from the state’s peak motoring body, a new state government law will protect RAA members and patrols at the roadside.

The law will be changed so that the 25km/hr speed limit will now apply to roadside breakdown and recovery vehicles when their lights are flashing as currently applies to emergency service vehicles when they have their red and blue lights activated.

Between 2019-2023, there were 20 reportable safety incidents caused by cars driving past breakdowns without due care, according to RAA Road Service data.

Alarmingly, this included five incidents where RAA patrol vans were hit by a car or motorcycle, and another five where traffic cones were hit or dragged down the road.

AMWU’s Stuart Gordon, RAA patrol Michael Walker, Minister Koutsantonis, RAA patrol Dean Jennings and RAA’s Charles Mountain

RAA Senior Manager Safety & Infrastructure Charles Mountain said RAA welcomed any measure to keep the vulnerable members and patrols safe at the roadside.

“Almost every South Australian motorist would have a story about when they were rescued at the roadside by an RAA patrol,” Mr Mountain said.

“No one chooses when or where they break down, and we welcome any measure that helps keep our patrols, members and the community safe at the roadside.

“We’ve seen dozens of near misses and our patrol vans have been hit five times over the last few years so it’s only a matter of time before someone is seriously injured or killed.

“This is not just about keeping our patrols safe, but also our 820,000 members and the rest of the South Australian community who might need a tow or other assistance.

“Our patrols are often helping some of the most vulnerable South Australians on our busiest and most dangerous roads.

“Whether that’s a young mum with a couple of children, elderly or disabled people and anyone in between.

“At the end of the day, it could be your child, husband or wife, brother or sister, elderly mother or father at risk.

“When you see the amber flashing lights of a breakdown service vehicle attending to someone’s car, please check your surroundings and safely reduce your speed – so we can all get home safely.”

The legislation is set to be introduced to parliament and, if passed, is expected to come into effect later this year.