CARRS-Q – Not all about cars
The Queensland based road safety think tank CARRS-Q (Centre for Accident Research and Road Safety Queensland) held a timely seminar looking at research on possible measures to counter driver inattention and distracted driving recently. Driver inattention is the fifth arm of the ‘Fatal Five’. These are the areas of danger proven responsible for a large percentage of injuries on our road, namely: speeding, drink or drug driving, not wearing seat belts and sleep deprived driving.
Developing apps to give instructions and warnings was one take-away message, but from a bicycle riding organisation point of view, the sooner we hear less of the driver response to their-fault crashes with our members the better – but particularly the classic “SMIDSY” (Sorry mate, I didn’t see you) response which is clearly a driver distraction issue.
Delegate Ben Wilson said, “We are all humans and make mistakes, but mobile phone use is proving a stumbling block to road safety that Bicycle Queensland argues needs greater research, education and enforcement measures. It is a difficult area. Research shows there is little difference between the distracted driver behaviour when using a legal hands-free phone device and holding the phone, which really brings into question our responsibilities as road users.”
BQ will push for appropriate research in this space and support actions to holt the trend of inattention that is a growing menace to all road users, but particularly for the more vulnerable riders and pedestrians.