Safe driving tips for the Wheatbelt



Making it home shouldn’t be a big deal. But in 2016 one person died on Wheatbelt roads, on average every two weeks. You can do your bit to get home safely.

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Tip 1: Avoid mobile phone distraction

What you think, and what you do:

79% of you believe using your phone increases the chance of crashing.
34% still admitted to reading texts behind the wheel.

How it affects your driving:

Using your phone while driving reduces your reaction times, impairs your concentration and takes your eyes off the road.
The use of a mobile phone while driving increases the risk of being involved in a crash by up to 4 times.

The stats:

Texting while driving at 100km/h is the same as driving the length of the MCG blindfolded.
If you’re caught, it’s a $400 fine and 3 demerit points.

What you can do:

Turn your phone off before you drive or set it to silent and keep it out of sight and reach. That text or call can wait.

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Tip 2: Make sure you're not too tired to drive

What you think, and what you do:

74% of you know that you can drift in and out of sleep without knowing.
40% admitted to driving when they knew they were too tired, with 1 in 5 having experienced a micro-sleep.

How it really affects your driving:

Reaction times are slower and alertness is significantly reduced. Your thoughts are likely to wander and you might experience a micro-sleep.

The stats:

16 fatal crashes in 2015 were fatigue related.
Research indicates that up to 30% of crashes involve fatigue.

What can you do?

Yawning or blinking a lot? Can't really remember those last few kilometres?
It's time for a break, some fresh air and a coffee or if you can, change drivers. Always consider the drive ahead of you and how you feel.

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Tip 3: Reconsider your speed

What you think, and what you do:

48% of you believe that speeding is the greatest cause of death in the Wheatbelt.
56% still admitted to driving above the speed limit on country roads.

How it really affects your driving:

The faster you go, the longer it takes to stop, the harder the impact. Travelling at just 60km/h, the average stopping distance is the same length as two cricket pitches.

The stats:

In 2015, 24% of all road fatalities were a result of speeding, and 62 lives were lost.
Speeding penalties vary, with the highest being $1000 fine and 7 demerit points.

What can you do?

If we all slowed down, our chances of crashing and being killed or seriously injured on the roads would dramatically decrease.



The Elephant in the Wheatbelt represents the ‘elephant in the room’ and the silence that surrounds road trauma in the region. Learn more.

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Think and do statistics taken from RAC’s Community Attitude Survey 2016 – Wheatbelt Residents.

Road safety information sourced from the Road Safety Commission online.


Learn more: The Elephant