The NSW 2020 road toll was 16 per cent lower than 2019, the lowest number since 1923 when the state’s population was roughly a quarter of the size it is today.
The NSW 2020 road toll was 16 per cent lower than 2019, the lowest number since 1923 when the state’s population was roughly a quarter of the size it is today.

COVID cuts NSW road toll to lowest since 1923

Last year's road toll was the lowest in nearly 100 years thanks largely to fewer drivers on the roads during pandemic restrictions.

There were 297 deaths on NSW roads in 2020, the lowest number since 1923 when the state's population was roughly a quarter of the size it is today. The 2020 road toll was 16 per cent lower than 2019, which had 352 deaths.

While the numbers are travelling in the right direction, Roads Minister Andrew Constance warned against complacency.

Speeding still remains the leading contributor to fatal crashes and speed related fatalities rose to 47 per cent of the total road toll.

The usually busy roads in Barangaroo during the pandemic were near empty. Picture: Richard Dobson
The usually busy roads in Barangaroo during the pandemic were near empty. Picture: Richard Dobson

Mr Constance hopes the controversial decision to remove warning signs for mobile speed cameras will put the brakes on the increasing involvement of speed in road fatalities.

There were far fewer deadly crashes on NSW roads last year than there were in 2019.

"What was positive to see was the greatest reduction in fatalities was on country roads with 50 fewer fatalities, including 28 fewer deaths from fatigue related crashes and 19 fewer fatalities from head on crashes," Mr Constance said.

"This tells us our $820 million investment in the Safer Roads Program to deliver road safety improvements (is) helping to reduce deaths on country roads year on year."

There have been 114 fewer major crashes during the current holiday double demerits period compared to last year.

Originally published as COVID cuts road toll to lowest since 1923


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