The two things keeping Gympie's road toll down
ONE year on from a sky-high road toll in the region and the statistics are looking very different.
In August last year an alarming 11 people had been killed on Gympie region roads, (Goomeri 4, Gympie 5 and Imbil 2), pushing the rate higher than it had ever been, according to Gympie police.
This year there have been two deaths on Gympie roads, both in January and one in Imbil last month.
Gympie Road Policing Unit officer in charge Chris Watson largely attributes the move in the safer direction to improvements in road infrastructure.
"One thing that has contributed is the extension of the highway's four lanes, including the new design standards such as wider shoulders, less objects to hit, and the absence of oncoming cars,” he said.
Police presence was also having an impact, he said.
"Thirty years ago you had to go and write 12 tickets a day. Now it's anywhere, any time.
"The way we are doing our policing is always going to make a difference. It's getting that overall presence which is hopefully driving a better culture on the roads and reducing the number of fatal and serious-injury crashes.”
He said generally there had been a steady decline across the state in road deaths since 2015.
Gympie roads had to constantly accommodate for large volumes of non-local traffic, Act Sgt Watson said.
"Gympie does have a lot of through traffic - we're the gateway to Fraser Island - we get a lot of recreation traffic and a lot of industrial traffic.”
The experienced traffic officer said the majority of crashes were due to driver inattention, especially in the form of mobile phone use.