Better protection needed for roadside workers: RACQ

RACQ has renewed its calls for the introduction of new laws which would force motorists to slow down and move over when emergency or incident responders were working on the roadside.

One of RACQ's Traffic Response Unit vehicles by the side of the road with a broken down car

RACQ’s Head of Technical and Safety Policy Steve Spalding said the laws had now been introduced in three Australian states and it was time Queensland followed suit.

Western Australia this week brought in the SLOMO law, following Victoria and South Australia,” Mr Spalding said.

“The law requires motorists to reduce their speed when approaching an emergency or incident response vehicle and change lanes when possible and safe to do so.

“These rules are about protecting our emergency responders whose lives are at risk by working in a high-speed, dangerous environment.

“Tragically we’ve seen lives of emergency respondents lost and it’s time for the Queensland Government to act to reduce the risk to those working to save lives and ease traffic delays on Queensland highways.”

Mr Spalding said RACQ had been calling for the change for some time.

“We need to ensure the State Government and motorists alike get on board with these laws to give emergency responders, and the public they are assisting, the space and safety they need to do what they do best.”

RACQ believed a Queensland slow down and move over law should provide protection to responders such as Queensland Police, Queensland Fire and Emergency Service, Queensland Ambulance Service, RACQ Traffic Response Vehicles, RACQ Patrol vehicles and tow trucks.