Victoria recorded 213 deaths on the road in 2020 – with speeding, drink and drug driving, and illegal phone use being blamed.

In a year which saw reduced traffic throughout due to coronavirus restrictions, the figures equal the lowest road toll since records began.

However, the Transport Accident Commission (TAC) says the statistics show poor, high-risk driver behaviour is continuing to have fatal consequences.

“Any reduction in the road trauma is welcome – but even one life lost on Victorian roads is too many, let alone more than 200 families starting 2021 in grief,” said Minister for Roads and Road Safety Ben Carroll.

“We all have to do more – and we’ve released an ambitious new Road Safety Strategy to make sure all Victorians are safe on our roads and reduce the risky behaviour that we know causes trauma.”

Regional roads were overrepresented, said the TAC, with 126 lives lost, accounting for more than half of the state’s road deaths – with excessive speed and fatigue major factors in country crashes.

The Government’s recently launched Road Safety Strategy 2021-2030 has a focus on delivering solutions to the major contributing factors to road trauma as well as proactively making roads safer for those where their workplace is the road, and more vulnerable road users.