Statistics & Facts
Work Related Road Safety
Australian Statistics – Work Related Road Safety
Road crashes are the biggest cause of work-related death and injury and absence from work in Australia
Work-related road crashes in Australia account for about 50% of all occupational fatalities and 15 % of national road deaths. Many people are killed or seriously injured while travelling to and from work (ATC, 2011). The National Road Safety Strategy 2011-2020 states that ‘on average, company drivers travel more than twice the annual distance of private car drivers and have about 50 % more incidents.
For many businesses, vehicles and driving for work purposes are the greatest risk to employees. Therefore opportunities exist to improve road safety by working closely with organisations and employers. (NRSPP, 2013)
In 2009-10, 337 people died in Australia from a work-related traumatic injury. Of these, 75% were injured at work and 25% were travelling to or from work.
The risk of being involved in a fatality while driving 40,000km a year has been estimated at 1 in 8000. This estimate is consistent with fatality estimates within mining, 25% higher than construction and much higher than agriculture – 1 in 13,500, (Zurich, 2011).
New Zealand Statistics – Work Related Road Safety
Work-related traffic fatalities represent the greatest proportion of work-related death in New Zealand – approximately 30% of workplace deaths, as well as 13% of workplace injuries. This creates a major burden for employers and New Zealand as a whole. As fleet vehicles make up a large part of New Zealand’s total fleet, it is vital that business owners and fleet operators keep their employees as safe as possible while on the road.
The total social cost of motor vehicle injury crashes in 2009 (the latest available figure ) has been estimated at approximately $3.67 billion, including loss of life and life quality, productivity, medical, legal and property damage costs. The average cost of a crash involving a fatality or permanent disability outcome for that year was $4.1 million.
With 373 fatalities in the 2010 calendar year, the total cost is substantial and so are the on-going effects, impacting on workplaces, families and the larger community.
Benefits of addressing road safety within a workplace
Research has revealed that organisations who have already invested in road safety initiatives consider that these efforts have been rewarded through an improved safety culture and outcomes and lower operating costs. For example, cost savings have included decreased insurance premiums, and less fuel use, vehicle maintenance, fleet damage and staff absenteeism associated with travel related injuries.
A short list of work related road safety benefits achieved through organisational focus and commitment and staff knowledge development includes:
- Reduction in the number of actual or potential road traffic crashes and injuries;
- Reduced sickness and injury absence;
- Retained corporate knowledge, less reliance on the use of temporary staff;
- Reduced risk of being sued for negligence;
- Reduced repair bills;
- Reduction in number of insurance claims and costs;
- Improved social responsibility credentials and corporate image;
- Increased customer confidence;
- Tendering advantage
- Increased staff morale