Blessing of the Roads Ceremony | Easter Weekend 2022

Published on Thursday, 14 April 2022 at 7:14:59 PM

The Shire of Pingelly, as well as our local emergency service providers wish you and your family a safe and enjoyable Easter weekend.

This morning they gathered for the annual Blessing of the Roads ceremony; a campaign to raise awareness of road safety ahead of the holiday break, as well as as recognise the role of the whole community in reducing road trauma.

Blessing of the Roads was first coordinated by RoadWise in 1999. It is a statewide community road safety campaign run in the lead up to and during the Easter long weekend, when many people travel long distances to visit family, friends or holiday destinations.

The Blessing of the Roads campaign is aligned to the globally-recognised safe system approach to road safety, working towards a long term vision of a road transport system where crashes resulting in death or serious injury are virtually eliminated [1]. 

As such, the Blessing of the Roads campaign intends to build community support for the long term vision and actions to achieve zero deaths and serious injuries from road crashes.
Scroll down below to view an Easter road safety message from Shire Vice President Jackie McBurney, as well as photographs of the Blessing of the Roads Ceremony.
Shire of Pingelly speech presented by Shire Vice President Jackie McBurney

Thank you for attending today’s Blessing of the Roads – the purpose of this little event is to raise awareness of road safety as we all head off on what is considered to be the last road trip before the cold winter months arrive.

Easter is a beautiful time of year and perfect for all sorts of holiday making activities. However, it is also a time of year when there is a vastly increased road traffic! This often equates to traffic hold ups and  impatient drivers – who in turn, can make impatient decisions!

The road crash statistics from the Road Safety Commission of Western Australia are staggering!

For the year 2021 – the year just finished – there were 166 road fatalities on Western Australian roads. 99 of these were in regional areas with 25 in the Great Southern and 18 in the Wheatbelt. That’s 43 people in our immediate regional area who died in a traffic crash last year. 43 people! More than the number standing around us today. 43 people who were someone’s daughter or son or mother or father or brother or sister …. And the list goes on.

So why did these 43 people die on our roads?

The overwhelming majority were light, motor vehicle occupants (not necessarily the driver) involved in a single crash, hitting an object of some sort and the suspected behavioural factors, based on  preliminary assessment by Police at the crash scenes, involved:

  • Alcohol
  • Speed
  • Fatigue
  • Inattention

 

Every single one of those factors is completely preventable! So… if we go back to those 43 people who died from our region last year, the majority of them died needlessly! We lost 43 neighbours who could be spending Easter with their family and friends this year.

  • If only I didn’t have that last glass of wine!
  • If only I drove a bit slower!
  • If only I had stayed the night at my friends house!
  • If only I didn’t answer my mobile phone!

Statistics can be very clever and paint all sorts of pictures – both positive and negative. However, the take home message from these statistics, is that many many road crashes and fatalities are due to driver behaviour that is preventable!

So… my message to us all as we head off on a wonderful Easter long weekend break, is to recognise the role that each of us plays in road fatalities, recognise just how preventable they are, and to come home safe!

Ladies and gentlemen, I wish you all a very happy and safe Easter. Please come home safe.

 

The Shire of Pingelly wishes everyone a safe and enjoyable Easter long weekend.

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