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Source: New South Wales Transport

Motorists are being reminded to drive safely and monitor road conditions these school holidays after a worrying rise in crashes over the last week.

Minister for Regional Transport and Roads and Acting Minister for Transport and Roads Paul Toole said there had been 12 fatal crashes since the start of the school holidays, which had tragically resulted in the deaths of 14 people.

“Last year there were 16 fatal crashes and 16 people killed over the entire July school holiday period. Frighteningly this means that with nearly a week left to run, this year NSW has almost recorded as many fatalities as last year’s entire July holiday period,” Mr Toole said.

“School holidays are meant to be a time of fun with family and friends – instead 14 people have lost their lives. Every life lost on our roads is a tragedy and has a devastating ripple effect on local communities.”

With severe weather forecast over coming days in parts of NSW drivers are being reminded of the importance of driving to the conditions and slowing down, with studies worldwide showing that relatively small changes in speeds can result in substantial changes in death or injury in crashes.

Minister for Police and Emergency Services David Elliott reminded drivers that dangerous behaviour on our roads will not be tolerated.

“As always, police will be out in full force enforcing the road rules to keep the community safe,” Mr Elliott said.

“Last night we saw wild weather lash parts of Sydney and NSW – these conditions can make the road one of the most dangerous places to be.

“After the tragedies we saw on the roads over the weekend, drivers are reminded to keep abreast of weather warnings and not to do anything that might put your life, or the life of a loved one or stranger, in jeopardy.”

Transport for NSW Deputy Secretary for Safety, Environment and Regulation Tara McCarthy said about 10,000 people were seriously injured on NSW roads every year.

“These people suffer injuries that alter the course of their entire lives. Many never fully recover and have to live with those injuries forever,” Ms McCarthy said.

“Road safety is everyone’s responsibility – ensure you’re well rested, stick to the speed limit, wear your seatbelt and never ever drive if you’re affected by drugs or alcohol.”

Mr Toole said that as of today, the NSW road toll currently stands at 170, and although it is 18 less than for the same time last year, it is still too high.

“One life lost is one too many. We want everyone to arrive safely at their destination and enjoy the school holidays,” Mr Toole said.