BUSWAYS BACKS NATIONAL ROAD SAFETY WEEK: SA AND NSW PLEDGES

By: Fabian Cotter, Photography by: courtesy Busways


DUAL-STATE OPERATOR Busways is encouraging all road users to ‘drive so others survive’ during National Road Safety Week (Nov 15 – 22), with its drivers in South Australia and New South Wales pledging to do so, the company reports.

BUSWAYS BACKS NATIONAL ROAD SAFETY WEEK: SA AND NSW PLEDGES
“By participating in this important campaign, we’re encouraging our drivers to take the pledge and drive so others survive,” Busways managing director Byron Rowe said.

In addition to Busways reminding road users to be vigilant when behind the wheel, it advocates doing so ‘especially around large vehicles like buses’.

Busways’ drivers are taking the pledge this week – and with more than 1300 bus drivers, the company is on board with the national campaign as an opportunity to remind all drivers and other road users of the influence they have on our roads, it states.

"Safety is always top priority for our workforce," Busways managing director Byron Rowe said.

"While we hold responsibility ourselves, it’s important other road users remember that buses are large heavy vehicles that can’t stop quickly. All road users, pedestrians and passengers have a part to play when it comes to road safety.

"When incidents occur, the mental and physical toll it can have on bus drivers and the public can be colossal, depending on the severity of the incident.

"Education campaigns and programs such as National Road Safety Week and Busways’ Driver Training Program are core to building our safety culture," Rowe explained.

"The reality is that many road safety incidents are preventable if people pay attention on the road and respect road rules around heavy vehicles." He added.

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THE STATS

During 2015 to 2019, 34 people were killed and 295 seriously injured in heavy bus crashes across NSW, the company reminds.

Of the 34 people killed, 13 were pedestrians - our most vulnerable road users, it adds. Eleven were drivers, six were passengers, three were motorcyclists and one was a pedal cyclist, it explains.

Most fatalities and serious injuries occurred in metropolitan areas where pedestrians make up nearly half of all lives lost in heavy bus crashes, Busways states.

National Road Safety Week is an annual initiative highlighting the impact of road trauma and ways to reduce it; people can take the pledge ‘drive so others survive’ with daily themes reinforcing various important messages about safe driving, it says.

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TAKING THE PLEDGE

"By participating in this important campaign, we’re encouraging our drivers to take the pledge and drive so others survive," Rowe said.

"The National Road Safety Week message is simple: slow down, look out for others, make safe decisions so no one is injured or killed.

"This includes being safe around buses and not cutting in front of them as they are heavy vehicles that can’t stop quickly.

"Motorists should also be aware of the flashing lights on the back of the bus; they alert them to when children might be crossing the road or when the bus is looking to pull away from the kerb," he added.

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TOP TIPS

Busways recommendations for safety around buses include:

* Leave a safe distance – motorists should leave a safe distance between them and the bus. Buses take longer to stop, so by cutting in front of it the motorist minimises the distance between them and the bus.

* Don’t sit in the buses’ blind spots where they might not see you! Typical blind spots include along the entire passenger side of the vehicle; directly behind the vehicle; at the front of the vehicle; and beside the driver’s door. All road users - including cyclists, motorbike riders and pedestrians - are reminded to be mindful of this.

* Give buses plenty of room to move – buses need room to turn corners or navigate other obstacles like roundabouts, so do not overtake a turning vehicle.

* Remember to slow to 40km/h when bus lights flash – flashing lights warn motorists that school children may be crossing the road, or when they’re trying to pull away from the kerb.

* Motorists should always give way to a bus where possible.

National Road Safety Week is from the Safer Australian Roads and Highways (SARAH) group, partnering transport and road safety organisations with Government.

For further information visit: https://roadsafetyweek.com.au/

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ABOUT BUSWAYS

Busways is a family owned and operated company with more than 78 years’ experience in the transport industry, operating services across NSW including Western Sydney, the Central Coast, the Mid-North Coast and Adelaide’s Outer South Network, it confirms.

The company began as a single-person operation and has grown into a transportation business with a team in excess of 1756 people across 18 depots, it says.

The company provides school and route bus services, as well as expertise in transport operations, scheduling, asset management, marketing and communications and customer experience, it states.

With more than 890 buses in the fleet, 26 million passengers travel on a Busways journey every year, it explains.

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