Page 1179 - Week 03 - Thursday, 31 March 2011

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A process for the evaluation of awareness measures has commenced, with an initial community attitude survey completed in July 2010 to benchmark community attitudes to road safety and the effectiveness of awareness measures. Future surveys are planned. The 2010 survey found that there were mixed levels of awareness of the five prompted TAMS road safety campaigns, with electronic road signs, general road signs and television considered to be the most effective mediums for road safety messages.

Evaluation of road safety programs will continue to be progressed as a priority issue under the next ACT road safety strategy and the ACT road safety action plan. This will include establishment of stronger performance measures and targets to assess the effectiveness of initiatives, in line with work under the national road safety strategy. A computerised SmartForm system for reporting vehicle crashes in the ACT has been implemented. This project had a particular focus on reducing the resource requirements at police stations and improving customer service compared with the previous paper-based process.

A SmartForm for police attending traffic crashes has been in production since January 2009. A public SmartForm was implemented on a trial basis in January 2010, using kiosks at police stations. Full rollout of the SmartForm, allowing public access via the internet, was implemented late last year. At present, SmartForms are received by TAMS and relevant information entered into the TAMS crash database manually, as occurred with the previous paper-based process.

Integration of SmartForm inputs into TAMS data entry and data processing functions is a separate and internal TAMS project, requiring upgrading of the current crash database platform. Funding for this work has been sourced and a project plan has been finalised. The scope of works has been agreed with the selected contractor and the project is due to be completed by mid-2011.

In terms of motorcycle safety, many road safety countermeasures apply to both drivers and riders. The ACT also has existing programs covering specific motorcycle safety issues, including rider training and testing. Specific suggestions made by the Auditor-General in relation to on-road testing need to be considered in the context of an appropriate training structure. A review of ACT licensing, training and testing requirements for novice motorcycle riders has been completed by TAMS in conjunction with motorcycle stakeholders.

I think it is particularly poignant in relation to that that we note the most distressing road deaths that have occurred so far this year, with four road deaths in the last three weeks, with three of them being motorcyclists. Indeed, 50 per cent of road fatalities in this financial year have been motorcycle riders, and 30 per cent of all road deaths last year were motorcycle riders. This certainly is a major issue for the Canberra community and for the motorcycle riding fraternity within the ACT to have some regard to the inherent obvious risks that motorcyclists face with these alarmingly high rates of accident, serious injury and death being suffered by motorcycle riders within the ACT.

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