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    Coat of ArmsMedia Release
    Minister for Main Roads, Road Safety and Ports and Minister for Energy, Biofuels and Water Supply
    The Honourable Mark Bailey

    School Zones Back with Students Back to School

    Minister for Main Roads, Road Safety and Ports and Minister for Energy, Biofuels and Water Supply
    The Honourable Mark Bailey

    Monday, January 25, 2016

    School Zones Back with Students Back to School

    The Palaszczuk Government is reminding Queenslanders that police will be out in force this week to ensure Queensland kids have a safe start to the school year.

    Education Minister Kate Jones and Road Safety Minister Mark Bailey said the safety of children at schools across the state would continue to remain a high priority.

    “The Palaszczuk Government is committed to keeping Queensland kids safe on our roads – that’s why this week we’re focusing on making sure people remember that school is back and that means school zone speed limits are back in effect,” Minister Jones said.

    “In fact, to support that awareness over the longer term we’ll be delivering flashing school zone signs at an additional 100 school zones each year over the next three years, with $12 million allocated to the program in our 2015–2016 budget.

    “The flashing signs have been a resounding success since the state government introduced them in 2011. Since then, flashing signs have been installed at more than 500 school zones across Queensland.

    “Drivers notice the bright orange flashing signs as they pass through school zones and they serve their purpose of alerting drivers to be mindful of school children in the area.”

    Mr Bailey said a number of important factors are taken into account when assessing school sites for flashing signs, such as the accident history, traffic volumes, pedestrian movements, the speed limit and visibility.

    “With an additional 75 school crossing supervisors to be delivered over the next three financial years, the Palaszczuk Government is getting on with the vital job of improving road safety around schools,” he said.

    Mr Bailey said phase three of the holiday road safety campaign – which starts today and will run until January 31 – will target bad driver behaviour in school zones.

    “While we don’t tolerate anyone speeding anywhere across Queensland, it is especially dangerous to speed through a school zone – it’s absolutely not on.

    “Last year police issued 1,100 fines for speeding through school zones, 96 of those were for doing more than 20 kilometres over the speed limit.

    “While some may think they’re ‘only’ doing 60 in a 40 zone, when we’re talking about the unpredictable nature of children – that can be all it takes to cause a tragedy.”

    Commissioner Ian Stewart said parents would see an increased police presence around their children’s schools over the next week.

    “Making sure children are safe while walking to and from school is an important part of our overall road safety strategy,” Commissioner Stewart said.

    “As well as speeding drivers, we’ll continue to have a sharp focus on other bad driver behaviour including the rest of the fatal five – drink and drug driving, not wearing a seat belt, driving while tired and using a mobile phone behind the wheel.

    “Last year we saw a disturbing increase in the number of drug drivers. In 2014, one in 20 drivers we drug tested returned a positive reading. Last year it was one in eight.

    “We’ve also continued to see an increase in the number of people caught using their phones while driving. We fined 120 more drivers for the offence last year than in 2013.

    “Put your phone on silent. Put it in the glove box. Put it in the boot. If you need to send a text message, pull over. Using your phone behind the wheel at any time is an offence, but doing it while driving through a school zone is particularly reckless.

    “I’m certainly hoping to see a drop in people committing these offences over this final phase of the holiday road safety campaign.”


    Media Contacts:     Minister Bailey’s office:                               3719 7321

                                 Minister Jones’ office:                                 3719 7530

                                 Police Media:                                                3015 2444