World focus on pedestrian safety

08 May 2013

With almost one in every eight road fatalities in South Australia involving a pedestrian, the State Government is urging motorists and pedestrians to be more vigilant on the roads.

Road Safety Minister Michael O’Brien said pedestrian safety is the focus of this year's United Nations Road Safety Week (6-12 May), which aims to highlight the importance of keeping our most vulnerable of road users safe.

“With six pedestrians already killed on our roads this year, vigilance and awareness remain the best way to reduce risk,” Mr O’Brien said.

“As pedestrians, we can always increase our safety by ensuring we are more visible and stick to using safe routes and road crossings wherever possible.

“Drivers can also help by scanning for pedestrians at crossings and intersections, and being aware of the potential presence of pedestrians affected by alcohol around entertainment venues.

“Purchasing safer vehicles, particularly those with pedestrian safety features, is also another way to make our roads safer for everyone.”

While serious incidents involving pedestrians occur during all times of the day, statistics indicate a peak between 3pm-7pm, with the risk of a pedestrian being seriously injured or killed increasing substantially once dark.

Mr O’Brien said recent State Government initiatives to improve pedestrian safety include pedestrian countdown timers at a number of locations in the city, including new timers at Port Road in front of the Adelaide Entertainment Centre, and new bicycle and pedestrian actuated crossings along Greenways routes.

“Monitoring conducted at the first countdown timer installed at North Terrace by the Railway Station revealed users believe they are useful and the crossing is safer,” Mr O’Brien said.

“While our $12m four-year Greenway program, which includes the development of the Outer Harbor Greenways Project, the Merino Rocks Greenway, the Gawler Greenway and the Mike Turtur Bikeway, is aimed at increasing safety and mobility for pedestrians and cyclists.”

In addition to pedestrian safety, the United Nations Road Safety Week will also focus on level crossing safety with today being International Level Crossing Awareness Day.

UN Road Safety Week continues until Sunday, 12 May.

More information on pedestrian safety.

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