Road safety everyone’s responsibility is City of Wanneroo Blessing of the Roads message


Wanneroo Mayor Tracey Roberts with local school students.
Wanneroo Mayor Tracey Roberts with local school students.

THAT road safety is everyone’s responsibility was the message given at the City of Wanneroo’s Blessing of the Roads ceremony today.

Representatives from St John Ambulance, the Department of Fire and Emergency Services and WA Police, primary and high school students, politicians and Driver Reviver program volunteers gathered at the intersection of Joondalup Drive and Wanneroo Road for the annual event.

Mayor Tracey Roberts said all road users needed to play a part in improving road safety.

“We all need to take care, keep within the speed limits, wear seatbelts, never use mobile phones while driving and never drink and drive,” she said.

“Fatigue is a silent killer on WA roads, so drivers need to ensure they are not driving while tired and make sure to stop regularly when on long trips.”

She told the crowd preliminary reports showed 161 people died on WA roads last year and 170 were injured, while 11 people were killed in road traffic accidents over the Labour Day long weekend.

“While holidays are meant to be a time of enjoyment with family and friend, it can quickly turn to tragedy if due care is not taken,” she said.

Royal Perth Hospital trauma director Dr Sudakhar Rao said 60 per cent of all trauma patients treated at the hospital were from road accidents and outcomes for people with spinal cord injuries remained the same as 25 years ago.

“In the last 25 years, there has not been a single medical advance in the treatment of spinal cord injuries,” he said.

Dr Rao said while the hospital offered the best trauma system in Australia, the rate of trauma victims was the worst in the country in 2013 and second worst in 2014.

“So whose fault is it? We live in a world where it’s always someone else’s fault,” he said.

“I would suggest that it’s our fault.

“It’s time for us to take personal responsibility.”

Human Spirit Awards were presented to RoadWise Working Group chairman and active Driver Reviver volunteer Norman Hewer and Carramar Primary School traffic warden Derek Bowen for their commitment to improving road safety.

Police chaplain Joe Newbold led a prayer for the safety of road users and emergency services workers before blessing the roads.

Mrs Roberts and students then placed white crosses in the ground to represent road fatalities.

People can access the City’s Driver Reviver facility at Indian Ocean Drive, 5km north of Breakwater Drive, from 8am to 4pm on Easter Monday, March 28.