Caltex and road-safety group launch ‘Fatality Free Friday’

Caltex and the Australian Road Safety Foundation (ARSF) have teamed up to launch the ‘Fatality Free Friday’ crusade today in Victoria.

New research conducted by the ARSF shows more than 291 Victorians were killed on the state’s roads in 2016.

According to the data, 51 per cent of Victorians surveyed said they did not ask speeding friends or family members to slow down, and 52 per cent would not ask taxi, Uber or other professional drivers who were texting at the wheel to put their phones away.

“We need to create a culture where we call each other out on bad behaviour behind the wheel, instead of shuffling the responsibility onto others,” ARSF founder and CEO Russell White said.

“That’s what our Fatality Free Friday initiative is about: educating road users on the individual role they play in reducing the devastating impact of road crashes.”

The research also found that one in five Victorians surveyed only narrowly avoid at least one crash per month, and eight per cent experience close calls on a weekly basis.

“Obviously, nobody goes out looking to be in a road crash, but not everyone goes out deliberately looking to avoid one either, and that’s evident every time someone speeds, takes a risk on the road, or uses their mobile phone,” Mr White said.

Caltex, the founding partner of Fatality Free Friday, and the ARSF are set to launch the nation’s largest community-based road-safety campaign today (May 26), taking road-safety pledges from road users around the country.

Caltex is also supporting the initiative with a $75 million upgrade to its Newport Terminal in Melbourne, offering a new entrance designed to allow heavy vehicles to manoeuvre clear of a known local blackspot.

The upgrade is said to enable more than 11,000 vehicles daily to flow freely along Douglas Parade, where the terminal is located.

“We’re out on the road every single day, sharing it with our customers, suppliers and neighbours,” Caltex Acting Executive General Manager Supply Operations Frank Boys said.

“That’s one reason why being an advocate for road safety is immensely important to us and the communities in which we operate.”

Caltex and the ARSF are urging road users to help reduce the national road toll by adding the Fatality Free Friday pledge to their Facebook and/or Twitter page.

More information can be found at www.fatalityfreefriday.com.au.

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