The number of pedestrians killed on Western Australian roads has nearly doubled compared to this time last year.

The RAC is urging road users to pay extra attention to their surroundings after new figures reveal 11 pedestrians were killed on roads in the state between January and May this year – up from six fatalities over the same period last year.

“With WA consistently having one of the worst road safety records in the country, and with deaths and serious injuries occurring nearly every day, it’s never been more important to prioritise safety above all else,” said RAC General Manager of Corporate Affairs Will Golsby.

“Distraction and inattention pose serious risks to all road users, so we’d urge everyone to look up and focus on the safety of those around them.”

RAC’s safety tips for pedestrians:

  • Always check for oncoming traffic
  • Where possible, cross at designated pedestrian crossings – the Road Traffic Code states that if one is available within 20 metres you must use it
  • If you cannot cross at a designated crossing, take steps to ensure you can be seen by drivers (e.g. cross in well-lit locations, avoid crossing between parked cars or queuing traffic, or near a curve in the road)
  • Motorists must give way to pedestrians already crossing the road they are turning into, but don’t assume they will
  • Take extra care when walking on or around the road if you have been consuming alcohol, medication or other substances – these may impair your reaction time and judgement
  • Keep your eyes on the road instead of on your smartphone screen
  • Be extra cautious when walking with headphones in because it’s harder to hear traffic around you

RAC’s safety tips for drivers:

  • Take actions to avoid or minimise distractions while driving
  • Slow down and watch for kids around schools and playgrounds, and on residential streets
  • Be alert in areas with high levels of pedestrian activity (e.g. main streets and shopping areas, at pedestrian crossings, intersections and other locations where pedestrians might step out unexpectedly such as between cars or behind buses)