Survive Driving In This Season Of Disasters

The Queensland Police Service (QPS) and Queensland Fire and Emergency Services (QFES) urge motorists to drive under normal conditions as Queensland braces for a 2021-2022 wet disaster season in the Queensland.

With a La Niña weather event affecting Queensland this summer, QPS is reminding drivers of the dangers created by wet weather.

QPS deputy commissioner and chief executive of the Queensland Disaster Management Committee Ben Marcus said reduced visibility, slippery roads and debris were among the dangers drivers could encounter during and after a storm, cyclone tropical or flooding.

“So far this year, police have seen drivers take dangerous risks on wet roads, including speeding up and crossing flood waters,” Deputy Commissioner Marcus said.

“As we now enter Queensland’s disaster season, police want all motorists to think about what they need to do to get home safely in wet weather.”

Assistant Commissioner Marcus said there were a number of steps drivers could take this summer.

“Before you leave home, don’t forget to plan your trip in advance by checking for weather warnings and road conditions in your area and along your travel itinerary,” he said.

“While on the road, slow down, always leave enough space between you and the car in front of you, and listen to weather warnings and updates on your local radio station.”

Deputy Commissioner Marcus said during a disaster, damaged or flooded roads and debris could create delays and difficulties for emergency services responding to accident sites.

“Ideally, the last place you should be during a storm is on the road,” he said.

“However, if you find yourself stuck in a storm or heavy downpour while driving, find a safe place to stop and turn on your hazard lights. “

Since early November, QFES staff have attended more than 30 water rescues across Queensland.

Queensland Fire and Emergency Services Commissioner Greg Leach urged motorists to be aware of the risk of flooded and reinforced roads; if it is flooded, forget it.

“Large parts of Queensland experience heavy rainfall and many watersheds are swollen and will respond quickly to further rainfall,” Mr Leach said.

“If motorists are faced with flooding on the roads, it is never safe to try to cross.

“Too many motorists think they are the exception to this rule and find themselves in a dangerous situation which is also dangerous for the emergency services.

“Please be patient, drive under conditions, and plan ahead in case your route gets flooded.”

Since the start of 2021, a total of 261 people have lost their lives on the roads of Queenland, 14 more than at the same time last year.

“Every year police and emergency services see Queensland drivers putting their lives and the lives of their loved ones at risk by taking unnecessary risks on wet roads,” Deputy Commissioner Marcus said.

“With so many lives lost already this year, it is up to everyone to make the right decisions behind the wheel in this season of disasters.”