COAST ROAD TOLL: Cops gear up for what 2021 brings
Fraser Coast police are reminding residents road safety is everyone's’ responsibility.
It comes as Queensland was the only state to record an increase in road deaths for 2020 with a toll of 267 – 57 more than in 2019.
Transport and Main Roads data shows more than 180 drivers and passengers, 54 motorcyclists, seven cyclists and 34 pedestrians were killed across the year.
On the Fraser Coast 12 lives were lost, including two teenagers from Maryborough who were killed in a truck crash near Torbanlea; a 26-year-old Maryborough man whose motorbike crashed into another car; and a driver of a 4WD that rolled over on Fraser Island.
According to the Acting Assistant Commissioner Ray Rohweder, the greatest concern centred on region roads, with “distinct” increases in the road toll for the Central region, Mackay and Wide-Bay Burnett.
Deaths in the central police region, which includes the Fraser Coast communities, increased by 40 per cent.
Speaking of the 2020 toll, Officer in Charge of the Maryborough Road Policing Unit (RPU) Sergeant Josh Churchward said it was the highest for the state in five years.
“The number one priority of everyone in the Maryborough RPU, making sure motorists get to their destinations safely. Reducing the trauma and loss of lives on our roads.”
“Always be mindful of the fatal five, speeding, drink and drug driving, not wearing seatbelts, fatigue and distracted driving. If you are out there on the road doing the wrong thing, you can expect to see us.
“Throughout 2021 we will have a combination of high visibility road policing operations targeting the fatal five and focusing on known traffic hot spots or crash areas, as well as day to day enforcement undertaken on our roads by both marked and unmarked police vehicles.”
RACQ spokesman Lauren Ritchie said that the central police region had consistently been the state’s deadliest for road fatalities since 2015.
“It’s an horrific title to hold,” she said in a statement last month.
In December, during what’s known as Australia’s worst month for road trauma, the state’s peak motoring body launched its “drive like your life depends on it campaign”.
It included 32 billboards asking motorists to “drive like your life depends on it” that were placed along some of the region’s busiest roads.
In the Fraser Coast, signs were placed at Gympie Road near Maryborough Speedway, on the Bruce Highway at Blairmore and Bauple, and on Maryborough-Hervey Bay Road.
According to a Transport and Main Roads spokesman, no fatal crashes were reported in the Fraser Coast Regional Local Government area for the month of December.
Queensland Police road toll statistics
Brisbane (North Brisbane and South Brisbane) – 24
Central (Capricornia, Mackay, Sunshine Coast, Wide Bay Burnett) – 89
Northern (far North QLD, Mount Isa, Townsville) – 56
South Eastern – (Gold Coast and Logan) – 42
Southern (Darling Downs, Ipswich, Moreton, South West QLD) – 64