The Andrews Labor Government is urging motorists to consider the safety of their vehicles, after new data found a striking link in the age of cars involved in motorist deaths across the state.
Minister for Roads and Road Safety Ben Carroll said new figures from the Transport Accident Commission show around two thirds of drivers and passengers killed on Victorian roads last year were travelling in vehicles aged more than 10 years.
So far in 2022, 28 out of the 54 driver and passenger deaths have occurred in a vehicle built more than a decade ago and the average vehicle on Victoria’s roads is around 10 years old – meaning far too many cars are without the latest lifesaving technologies found in more modern vehicles.
“The data shows safer vehicles save lives; when you’re in the market for a car take a moment to do your research with safety in mind because the decision you make can be a life-changing one,” said Road Safety Victoria head Carl Muller.
Life-saving safety features people should look for include auto-emergency braking, lane keep assist, blind spot monitoring, electronic stability control, and front, side, and curtain airbags.
Getting people into safer vehicles is a key priority of Victoria’s Road Safety Strategy and Action Plan 2021-2023, which sets ambitious targets to halve road deaths and significantly reduce serious injuries by 2030.
From March 2023, all newly introduced models sold in Australia must be fitted with autonomous emergency braking – which is expected to save dozens of lives across the country each year.
The Australasian New Car Assessment Program (ANCAP) and Used Car Safety Ratings (UCSR) are free to access and provide the latest vehicle safety information to help people in the market make an informed choice, according to the State Government.
The push follows National Road Safety Week last month, which highlighted the importance of road safety and what we can all do to make our roads safer for everyone.
A key theme of the week acknowledged the topic ‘how safe is my car’, encouraging people to think about safety when choosing a car and to ensure their current vehicle has enough safety features.
Transport Accident Commission CEO Joe Calafiore said the How Safe is Your Car website is the best place to start your search for a safe car.
People can see the latest ratings, look for information about vehicle safety features and check how safe their car is at howsafeisyourcar.com.au