December 27, 2019 16:52:19
South Australia’s roads have recorded their deadliest year since 2010, with the deaths of a pedestrian, a motorcyclist and a driver — all today — prompting police to issue another urgent plea.
- South Australia’s road toll has surged in the past week, reaching 111 for the year
- Three people have died today, including two who were injured in crashes several days ago
- Police are also investigating if reports of a second car involved in a pedestrian death were false
The most recent fatal collision occurred this morning just outside Birdwood in the Adelaide Hills, when a man rolled his car and hit a tree on Torrens Valley Road about 10:50am.
His death took the number of lives lost on the state’s roads this year to 111 — the highest since 2010, when 118 people were killed.
“There are 111 families who have been absolutely devastated — work colleagues, loved ones, communities,” Superintendent Bob Gray said.
Two other people died today as a result of crashes that occurred several days ago, including one police were not informed about at the time.
In that incident, a 38-year-old man came off his motorbike at Modbury on December 20, and was rushed to hospital.
“He subsequently succumbed to his injuries this morning … [and] we’re commencing our investigation,” Superintendent Gray said.
An 81-year-old pedestrian died this morning after he was hit at Flinders Park in Adelaide’s west on December 21.
In another incident today, a motorcyclist suffered serious injuries in a collision with a car on Gorge Road at Paracombe just before 12:30pm.
The rider was rushed to the Royal Adelaide Hospital in an ambulance.
The crash caused the motorbike to burst into flames, sparking a fire that was quickly controlled by the Country Fire Service.
Reports of a second driver may be false, police say
Today’s fatalities are in addition to the death of a 23-year-old pedestrian, who was hit by a car on John Rice Avenue at Elizabeth Vale on Christmas Day, and the deaths of two cyclists who were hit by trucks within six days of one another.
Initial reports suggested the 23-year-old from Davoren Park was struck by two cars, but Superintendent Gray said police were investigating whether that was the case.
“We’re trying to establish whether in fact there was a second vehicle,” he said.
“There’s a significant number of resources being put into that collision, we have a number of different versions [of events].”
Throughout the year, police repeatedly warned of the spiralling road toll and urged drivers to slow down.
“These collisions are preventable and that’s the frustration … I don’t think the majority of the public actually comprehend that,” Superintendent Gray said.
“You’re much better to get to your destination half an hour later than you wanted to get there, than to not get there at all.”
Ahead of their annual blitz on New Year’s Eve, police again highlighted the so-called ‘fatal five’: drink and drug driving, speeding, distraction, not wearing seatbelts and dangerous road users.
“This isn’t something we have the magic bullet to fix,” Superintendent Gray said.
“A number of pedestrians who have lost their lives on our roads have directly contributed to the loss of their lives, because of their actions.
“Last year, we had very few motorcyclists killed. The majority of the motorcyclists who have lost their life this year [did so as] a direct result of their behaviour on the roads.”
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