Saturday, February 24, 2018

Enticing visitors with safer roads

The Andrews Labor Government has launched a new campaign to help international visitors to Victoria drive with confidence and stay safe on our roads, with accommodation and tourism providers expected to reap the benefits.

Victoria welcomed 2.8 million international visitors who spent $7.6 billion in the 12 months to September and the Labor Government is ensuring that all visitors to our state have a safe and happy stay.

The Visiting Driver Road Safety Program was unveiled by minister for tourism and major events John Eren and will focus on visiting drivers travelling during the busy holiday period on unfamiliar roads in unfamiliar conditions.

More international visitors than ever are coming to Victoria and with more than a third of these visitors choosing a self-driving holiday, the need to boost road awareness and safety has never been more important.

“The Visiting Driver Road Safety Program will help international drivers in Victoria have a safe trip while enjoying everything our great state has to offer,” Mr Eren said.

“Tourists mean business growth and more jobs for regional Victoria, and we’re determined to ensure that everyone is safe on our roads during the busy summer period.”

The new initiative is being led by the Department of Economic Development, Jobs, Transport and Resources, in partnership with the Transport Accident Commission, Victoria Police and VicRoads.

Modelled on the successful New Zealand international driver safety project, the initiative is being supported by the major vehicle rental companies which recognise the critical responsibility they have in ensuring their clients are aware of road safety risks.

The safety messages will be distributed to visiting drivers through various channels including bi-lingual videos, digital advertising, social media and promotional materials within hire vehicles, with key messages including:

  • Pull over to take photos and enjoy the scenery;
  • Journeys may take longer than you think. Allow extra time;
  • Take a break every two hours;
  • Drive within the limits and to the conditions;
  • Get to know the road rules, signs and markings before you drive;
  • Everyone must wear seatbelts;
  • Remember to keep left; and
  • Avoid distractions: do not use mobile phones or other devices while driving.

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One comment

  1. How about actually fixing some of the potholes and road surfaces to make it safer for everyone. The main tourist road to Wilsons Promontory (which is consistently advertised as Victoria’s most loved national park) is a disgrace! It attracts hundreds of thousands of visitors every year but instead of fixing the road surface, they have simply erected “rough surface” signs and reduced the speed limit from 100 to 80km/hr. Every time it rains (and not a lot of rain is needed), the water pools on the road making it dangerous, but they won’t fix the drainage. Potholes are made worse by the rain puddles. It is a disaster waiting to happen, particularly when you combine tourists on unfamiliar roads, cars towing caravans, heavy vehicles and milk transport trucks who all frequently also use this road as well as wombats/kangaroos etc crossing the road.

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