A motorcyclist who lost his life after he was flung off his bike in a road collision in Truganina was one of 15 people killed on the west’s roads in the past financial year.
RoadSafe Westgate’s annual report shows that 895 people were injured – including 214 seriously injured – in 910 road collisions across the Westgate division in 2016-17.
Despite a 17 per cent drop in Wyndham collisions in the 12-month period, higher numbers in Maribyrnong and Hobsons Bay mean the area’s road toll remained on par with the figures of 2015-16, when 16 people were killed and 913 injured.
Among the fatalities from the past financial year were a driver who failed to give way at a Braybrook intersection and drove into the path of an oncoming truck and a student heading to school on his skateboard who was struck and run over by a car in Brookfield.
Hooning remains a big problem for Wyndham, accounting for just over half (178) of the 351 cars impounded between January 1 and July 31 this year, compared to 98 in Melton, 44 in Hobsons Bay and 31 in Maribyrnong. Maribyrnong recorded the highest ratio of positive breath tests, with one in every 508 drivers tested returning a positive result.
Jim Giddings from RoadSafe Westgate, a road safety advocacy group with programs across Wyndham, Melton, Hobsons Bay and Maribyrnong, said there was still a long way to go to reduce the over-representation of young drivers involved in road crashes.
Sergeant Marty Wallace, from Westgate Highway Patrol, said police efforts were driven by statistical data on collisions, with a particular focus on the times and places where fatal and serious injury collisions occurred regularly.
“Our key focus areas are speeding, drink and drug driving, fatigue, distraction, mobile phone use and seat belts,” he said.
Sergeant Wallace said police were currently targeting serious injury collisions along major arterials in Maribyrnong and Hobsons Bay through Operation Aerodyne, and would be out in force during the upcoming Melbourne Cup long weekend as part of Operation Furlong.