NSW launches action plan in bid to halve road fatalities

New targets to halve deaths and reduce serious injuries by 30 per cent on NSW roads by 2030 will underpin a NSW Government commitment to spend an additional $250 million on road safety.

Delivered under the 2026 Road Safety Action Plan will be a new heavy vehicle safety strategy through partnership with industry.

Trials of technology on heavy vehicles and buses to improve detection of pedestrians and cyclists are also planned.

According to a Transport for NSW Heavy Truck Fatal Crashes report there were 53 fatal crashes involving heavy trucks in the 12 month period ending 24 April, 2022, 11 more than the previous 12 months. During the same period 58 fatalities from heavy truck crashes were reported, 12 more than the year prior.

Between 2017 and 2021, some 260 fatal crashes involved heavy trucks, an average of 52 fatal crashes per year for the five year period.

Minister for Metropolitan Roads Natalie Ward said the newly-released 2026 Road Safety Action Plan outlined a series of important new road safety initiatives to reduce the road toll.

“One death is a death too many and we want to create the safest road system we can, so that everyone using the road returns home safely to their families,” she said.

“We know the measures we’ve delivered through our previous Plan have worked to save lives. 270 people were killed on NSW roads last year, our lowest road toll since 1923, but this number is still too high.”

Under the previous 2021 Road Safety Plan, NSW achieved its target of a 30 per cent reduction in road deaths in the past decade.

“That was a heartening result but it’s vital we look to the future and continue the trend with the ultimate aim to be no deaths on our roads. We should be treating everyone on our roads as if they are family,” said Ward.

“Important initiatives in our Plan include a new online Learner Licence Education and Testing Platform to improve interactive learning and access to a licence,” she added.

Minister for Regional Transport and Roads Sam Farraway said rural and regional NSW would continue to be a key focus under the Plan.

“People living in regional NSW typically spend more time on the road, driving further, and at higher speeds where safety infrastructure can make a life-saving difference,” he said.

“This funding boost will build on programs already making an important difference in our regional communities such as the Saving Lives on Country Roads Initiative.”

The 2026 Road Safety Action Plan also includes:

Trialling a vehicle safety program to increase the use of safer vehicles among younger and disadvantaged drivers; partnership with the Road Trauma Support Group NSW, including funding to deliver services to families affected by road trauma; using existing mobile phone detection cameras to detect drivers not wearing a seatbelt, with legislation to make the change to go to NSW Parliament this year; enhancing the Local Government Road Safety Program; further expanding the Driver Licencing Access Program, which supports disadvantaged people to become safely licenced; a new online Road Safety Education Centre to improve access to information and resources for all road users; and revitalising the strategy for drug and alcohol testing of drivers.

The $250 million funding boost brings the NSW Government’s commitment to improving road safety to almost $2.4 billion over the next five years, excluding any potential further safety infrastructure funding.

All initiatives will be delivered through the Community Road Safety Fund, which includes every dollar from speed, red light and mobile phone use offences detected by cameras.

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