Success in Regional Road Safety Program

Information gathered in the past two years shows that our investment in regional road safety has resulted in fewer fatalities

We are seeing positive outcomes from early crash reduction analysis undertaken across 163 Regional Road Safety Program projects covering 4,800km and delivered over the last two years.

Among these projects were:

  • Widening sealed shoulders and installing audible edge lines on Albany Highway between Gleneagles and Williams (Wheatbelt)
  • Widening sealed shoulders and installing audible edge lines on Brookton Highway, between the Brookton town site and west of the juncture with Yarra Road (Wheatbelt)
  • Installing audible edge lines on more than 1,000 km of Eyre Highway (Goldfields Esperance)

Road Safety Branch Manager David Moyses said “Crash data up to December 2022 indicated a 50 per cent reduction in fatalities and 35 per cent reduction in serious injuries when compared to the previous five years. There are also positive indicators at a whole of network level with a 10 per cent reduction of regional single vehicle hit object or non-collision crashes in 2021 when compared to the previous five-year average.”

While these initial results are promising we are mindful that we have only improved a small length of road compared to the total network length. These early crash reduction indicators for killed and serious injury crashes support analysis undertaken by the Curtin-Monash Accident Research Centre into the effectiveness of sealed shoulders and audible edge lines.

The Regional Road Safety Program has focussed on road treatments such as shoulder sealing and widening, audible tactile line markings and median separation (centreline widening). These treatments were deliberately chosen after close analysis of crash data showed a large number of fatalities occurred in lane departure crashes.

There were 175 road fatalities for Western Australia in 2022, which was a six year high. Of this total, 65 per cent occurred on rural roads with vehicles running off the road hitting an object and non-collision crashes featuring prominently. A full evaluation will be completed with at least three years post construction data to formally assess the success of the Regional Road Safety Program.