Featured artist: Shannon Crees

Crashes in Marrickville

Featured artist: Shannon Crees
You are here:

Community

Crashes in Marrickville

How many crashes are there?

There are approximately two serious crashes and more than one casualty every day in Marrickville.

  • a serious crash is defined as one where any person was injured or a vehicle had to be towed
  • a casualty is defined as any person who is either killed or injured
Table: Crashes and casualties in Marrickville, 2000 - 2004
 
 20002001200220032004Average number per year

Serious crashes

842

777

640

646

552

691

People killed or injured

418

462

392

355

324

390

Who are the casualties?

Most of the casualties are drivers or their passengers, but almost one in five are pedestrians.

Pedestrian casualties are a particular concern because when a person is struck by a vehicle, their injuries are nearly always very severe. For this reason, Marrickville Council has made pedestrian safety a priority over the past five years. These efforts appear to have finally paid off with a reduction in the number of pedestrian casualties in 2004. There has also been a reduction in the number of car drivers and passenger casualties.

Figure 1. Number of casualties in each road user group each year in Marrickville, 2000-2004

What do these crashes cost the community?

The human costs of road crashes cannot be assessed in numbers, but it is possible to place a dollar value on cost of crashes to the community.

  • What are the costs for police and emergency services to attend a crash and take care of those injured?
  • What are the costs of medical treatment and long term health care?
  • What are the costs of property damage and insurance?
  • What is the financial cost to the families and work places of the casualties?

The RTA provides averaged cost estimates which are useful when we need to justify the cost of preventative measures.

Using the RTA estimates, the cost to the community of the crashes that occurred in Marrickville during 2004 alone was over $41.4 million (See table below).

Table 2. The cost to the community of serious crashes in Marrickville, 2004
 
Crash TypeNumberAverage costTotal cost

Fatality

3

$1,787,400

$5,362,200.00

Injury crash

258

$127,900

$32,998,200.00

Non-injury crash

291

$7,150

$2,080,650.00

Total

552

 

$40,441,050.00

Why do these crashes happen?

Community education and continuing police enforcement programs do appear to have successfully influenced driver behaviour in this area.

Drink driving is now widely recognised as socially irresponsible behaviour and alcohol is involved in only 2% of casualties compared to 7% ten years ago in 1996. However the proportion of casualties associated with excessive speed has actually increased from 7% in 1996 to 8% in 2004. This is a matter of concern but is still well below the average of 11% of casualties in the whole Sydney region in 2004.

Alcohol and speed are involved in only a relatively small proportion of all the crashes that occur in Marrickville. So why are people still having so many crashes?

Intersections

Over the 5 year period from 2000 to 2004, the RTA data shows that the majority (69%) of all crashes happen at intersections. One driver may be legally in the wrong, but every one involved contributes to a crash.

Many drivers assume that if they have right of way, then they should just take it. But a good driver checks to see what the other drivers are doing.

Do not assume you should go just because you have right of way; check to see what the other driver is doing.

  • Is the other driver slowing down?
  • Do they realise the lights have changed?
  • Are they going to try and run the red light?
  • Have they seen you?
  • Is it safe to proceed?

Driving too close

Over the 5 year period from 2000 to 2004, the RTA data shows that more than one in four crashes (26%) is a rear end collision. These are almost invariably due to the second driver driving too close. If all drivers allowed a 3-second gap between them and the vehicle in front, most of these crashes would not happen.

How to work out a safe following distance?

To calculate a three-second crash avoidance space when following another vehicle, use this basic technique. As the rear of the vehicle in front of you passes an object at the side of the road such as a power pole, tree or sign, start a three-second count "one thousand and one, one thousand and two, one thousand and three".

If your car passes the object you picked before you finish the three-second count, you are following too closely. Your crash avoidance space is not large enough.

Slow down, and repeat the count again until the three-second crash avoidance space is achieved. In poor driving conditions, such as rain, night and gravel roads, it may be necessary to increase your crash avoidance space to four or more seconds. Refer to the Road Users' Handbook available on line on the RTA website.

Table 3. Types of crashes, Marrickville, 2000 - 2004

Type of crashesNumberIntersection crashesNon intersection crashesAll crashes

All rear end

899

62%

38%

26%

All turn across traffic

1026

98%

2%

30%

All pedestrian

333

62%

38%

10%

All off road out of control

560

41%

59%

16%

Head on

88

51%

49%

3%

Lane change

203

59%

41%

6%

U-turn

64

47%

53%

2%

Emerging from driveway/parking

156

35%

65%

5%

Overtaking

16

63%

38%

0%

Other movement

102

36%

64%

3%

Total crashes

3447

67%

33%

100%

The majority (54%) of drivers who crash in Marrickville are either local residents of Marrickville (22%) or neighbours from adjacent areas (32%) including Canterbury (12%), Ashfield (4%), Leichhardt (3%), Rockdale (5%), Botany (1%) and the City of Sydney (3%).

Most of the drivers who crash in Marrickville are aged over 25.More than one third are between 26 and 39 (34%) and almost another quarter (23%) are aged between 40 and 59.

Young people are involved in only a relatively small proportion of the crashes, but their crash rate is high relative to the number of young drivers in the population. Young drivers aged 17-25 are involved in 22% of the crashes which is high relative to their proportion in the population (16%) based on the 2001 census.

Figure 2. Age of drivers in crashes in Marrickville, 2000-2004

Which roads are the worst?

As might be expected, the busiest roads also have the most crashes. There are almost two crashes a week on the Princes Highway alone.

Table 4. Roads which average more than 20 crashes per year, Marrickville

 20002001200220032004TotalAverage p.a.

Princes

103

119

88

91

88

489

98

Great Western

73

78

58

58

42

309

62

New Canterbury

72

63

37

41

41

254

51

Stanmore

42

38

23

21

28

152

30

Sydenham

32

34

29

25

21

141

28

Marrickville

27

34

26

24

19

130

26

Enmore

27

31

21

22

20

121

24

Old Canterbury

33

21

20

18

17

109

22

Livingstone

28

25

19

17

20

109

22

Illawarra

37

16

19

19

15

106

21

Unwins Bridge

24

24

17

25

11

101

20

Railway

23

11

12

17

18

81

16

Wardell

19

14

24

19

15

91

18

Victoria

17

19

16

20

10

82

16

All other roads

277

261

230

219

188

1175

235

Grand total

834

788

639

636

553

3450

690

 

Table 5. Roads which average more than 8 casualty crashes per year in Marrickville.

 20002001200220032004TotalAverage p.a.

Princes

53

62

46

49

41

251

50

Great Western

28

40

33

29

21

151

30

New Canterbury

27

26

16

19

20

108

22

Marrickville

13

17

19

15

9

73

15

Enmore

13

21

12

14

13

73

15

Stanmore

20

16

15

11

13

75

15

Sydenham

9

20

12

9

13

63

13

Illawarra

20

12

12

12

6

62

12

Livingstone

12

9

8

8

9

46

9

Unwins Bridge

8

10

6

11

5

40

8

Crystal

6

10

13

4

6

39

8

Salisbury

8

6

4

9

14

41

8

Victoria

6

8

8

8

5

35

7

Old Canterbury

13

6

5

9

4

37

7

Wardell

4

11

11

6

5

37

7

All other roads

104

106

91

79

78

458

92

Total crashes

344

380

311

292

262

1589

318

Where are the most dangerous places for pedestrian crashes?

The roads where the most pedestrian crashes occur are those major routes which also serve as a shopping strip. These include the Princes Highway, Marrickville, Enmore and Illawarra roads.

Table 6. Roads which average at least one pedestrian crashes per year in Marrickville

 20002001200220032004TotalAverage p.a.

Princes

9

9

7

8

5

38

8

Great Western

5

1

6

8

6

26

5

Marrickville

6

4

6

6

7

29

6

Enmore

9

9

3

4

4

29

6

Illawarra

7

7

7

6

1

28

6

New Canterbury

9

4

1

2

3

19

4

Sydenham

5

6

1

1

3

16

3

Livingstone

1

1

1

2

4

9

2

Stanmore

 

1

3

2

3

9

2

Victoria

1

1

2

3

2

9

2

Addison

1

4

 

1

2

8

2

Crystal

2

2

2

1

 

7

1

Wardell

1

1

1

2

2

7

1

All other roads

25

20

33

21

12

111

22

Grand Total

81

70

73

67

54

345

69