More than one-third of drivers are ignoring advice to slow down and stop using their mobile phones, according to new research from the Transport Accident Commission.
The annual survey of 1700 drivers found 35 per cent of drivers thought they should not be booked for doing 105kmh in a 100kmh zone, while 13 per cent thought it was okay to drive at 65kmh in a 60kmh.
Earlier research from the TAC has shown that about 29 per cent of the Victorian road toll is speed related and that up to 95 deaths and 1300 serious injuries could be reduced if drivers reduced their average speed by just 5kmh.
TAC chief Joe Calafiore has again pleaded with motorists to take their foot off the pedal, with speed continuing to be one of the largest contributors to road deaths and injuries.
“While our research shows the majority of people don’t speed at all, an increasing proportion of motorists still see low-level speeding as acceptable,” he said.
“We understand that some in the community would like to drive faster, but we can never value a couple of minutes in reduced travel time ahead of our lives and the lives of others.
“While speed is not always the cause of a crash, the speed of a vehicle at impact will always determine the extent of the injuries that result. Imagine if someone you cared about never came home because someone wanted to get home a little sooner.”
Meanwhile, the survey showed that mobile phone use remains a continued problem, with 33 per cent of motorists admitting they have handled their device while driving. Perhaps more alarmingly is that 10 per cent admitted to writing and reading text messages while behind the wheel.
Victoria Police road policing spokeswoman Sergeant Julie-Anne Newman said speeding was particularly dangerous because it severely limits a driver’s reaction times and ability to control a car.
“Serious injury collisions can and do result from low-level speeding,” she said.
“When travelling in a 60kmh zone, for every 5kmh over the limit your risk of being involved in a collision doubles.
Report Summary (Source: TAC/Herald Sun)
- 33 per cent of drivers had used their mobile phone illegally
- 12 per cent had written and read text messages while behind the wheel
- 35 per cent believed they should be able to drive 105kmh in a 100kmh zone, up from 24 per cent in 2013
- 13 per cent believed they should be able to drive 65kmh in a 60kmh zone, up from eight per cent in 2013
- 36 per cent have intentionally sped in a 60kmh zone
- 42 per cent of drivers have intentionally sped in a 100kmh zone
- 6 per cent drove when they thought they were over the legal blood alcohol limit