Black Spot Program saving lives in WA

Road safety is a national problem and it matters to every person, in every community across Australia. 

Road crashes place a major emotional and economic strain on all affected communities but particularly on the families and friends of the victims. Accidents on our roads cost Australians approximately $30 billion per year. Obviously, we are not able to put a cost on the emotional pain and heartache felt by families and friends. This is the biggest cost of road deaths and road trauma. 

That is why I welcome very strongly, our Government’s announcement of funding to substantially improve 33 dangerous crash sites on Western Australia’s roads over the next twelve months. 

The Black Spot Program is one of the most effective safety measures the Federal Government has at its disposal. Safer roads save lives and the Black Spot Program is a fantastic initiative of the Australian Government that upgrades local streets and roads to make them safer for all road users. But it remains the case, that improving road conditions is only one component in addressing the national road toll and saving lives. 

Road safety is everyone’s responsibility. If you’re behind the wheel of a vehicle, you’re responsible for being safe, for ensuring your passengers are buckled in, that you’re not drink or drug driving. If you are a passenger, remind the driver they should not be on their phone, they should not speed and to remain focused on the road.

We need to work together, to be road safe and get to our destination alive.

The Government has committed $1 billion to the Black Spot Program from 2013-14 to 2022–23 to improve road safety across the nation. The Federal Government’s record investment into upgrading roads is saving lives right across the nation.

By specifically targeting road locations with a history of crashes for safety upgrades such as lighting, signage, traffic lights and roundabouts, the Black Spot Program reduces crashes causing injury and death at those sites by around 30 per cent.

Employment has taken a hit with the summer we've had – the longstanding drought, the bushfires and now COVID-19. But the Government has been out there on the front foot, we've been very forward leaning in making sure we've got the right policies in place to address these issues. 

While our first priority as a Government is to ensure public health and safety, we are continuing to deliver on infrastructure investments to help cushion the economic impacts of COVID-19 and provide a financial bridge to the recovery on the other side. Construction will be a very big part of that recovery. Continuing to push on with the planning, design and construction of transport infrastructure projects, which get people home sooner and safer, as well as keeping up road maintenance, are a key part of the Government’s approach in these difficult times.

WA will receive $15.4 million under the 2020-21 funding round. Fixing the 33 black spots identified in Western Australia over the next 12 months will play a crucial role in helping improve road safety. Each of the 33 projects are the highest priority projects identified by the panel and 14 are located in regional areas. 

From the largest project to the smallest, each will make an important contribution to reducing serious injuries and deaths. The intersection of Rockingham and Phoenix Roads, Hamilton Hill will have traffic signals replaced with a roundabout at a cost of $1.1 million and at the intersection of Green, Tyler and Merredin Streets at Mount Hawthorn $30,000 will be spent on extending the median island on Green Street to ban right turn movements.

What I particularly like about the Black Spot Program is that it is a collaboration between residents and all levels of government. None of these projects would be delivered without the community’s vital input and I encourage all residents and motorists to nominate projects for future funding rounds.

Because one accident, one injury, one death is one too many. Safer roads save lives.

 

The Hon. Scott Buchholz MP

Assistant Minister for Road Safety and Freight Transport