What’s killing road users in SA?

2 Jan

Take a look at these two graphics recently issued by the RAA. They detail what has caused road deaths in SA on both Metro and Rural roads.

SAPOL continue their purge on speeding motorists, particularly targeting motorcyclists in the Adelaide Hills. They are so desperate to maintain their revenue raising, that covert cameras are now common especially in and around Strathalbyn. Paris Creek, Macclesfield and Ashbourne Rds particularly come in for special attention. We are continually told that speed is the problem. The trouble is that their speed cameras are a cash cow that keeps on giving, so changing their mind is not likely to happen in the near future.

Looking at the above two graphics, speed does not seems to be the problem. Driver inattention, which includes everything from texting and talking on your mobile, to personal grooming and changing your music seems to be the main killer accounting for 185 deaths in total during the period 2013-17. According to an RAA spokesman, looking away from the road for just 3 seconds while you’re travelling at 60km/h means you travel 50 metres blind.

I’ve done a fair amount of riding in the Hills over the Christmas period and am shocked at the number of car drivers who are having difficulty keeping to their side of the road when a solid white line or double lines are running down the centre of the road. This is very common on the Greenhill Rd up track, which is the normal route I take to escape the city. This is also a common route for our club rides too. I’ve followed many cars up and down these roads, the vast majority are unable to keep to their side of the road and many ride their brakes all the way down the hills instead of selecting the correct gear.

Maybe the police should target driver behaviour on our roads – mobile phone usage (inattention) and hanging wheels on the wrong side of unbroken white lines (failing to keep left) being my recommendation. One day a motorcyclist is going to come a cropper with one of these careless car drivers. Meanwhile motorcyclists should take special care on these roads by NOT hugging the centre line on both left and right hand bends. Ensure that you are in the correct gear and that the bike does not run away causing you to ride the brakes particularly on downhill runs.