Home' Journeys : Feb Mar 2015 Contents Make bushfire
safety a priority
Lead by example
to help combat mobile phone
use behind the wheel
RACT Insurance is urging all drivers to lead by example to help
combat mobile phone usage behind the wheel, with new research
revealing a quarter of Tasmanians aged 30 - 49 are using their mobile
phones while driving without hands-free devices.
The research results reinforce calls to increase driver education to
combat distractions such as mobile phones, as well as an increase to
the legal penalties associated with illegal mobile phone use when in
control of a vehicle.
RACT Insurance CEO Trent Sayers said while those aged 18 - 29 had
a higher rate of mobile use behind the wheel, coming in at 30%, the
16% increase from the previous year in the 30 - 49 age bracket was
“The data also revealed 29% of those aged 18 - 29 regularly check
messages and emails while driving – again close to three times the
state average of 11% and up 10% from last year, with the second
worst offenders being those aged 30 - 49, at 15%,” Mr Sayers said.
Mr Sayers said the reckless and illegal behaviour illustrated in these
statistics across all age groups, was quite concerning and had
significant safety implications for all road users, not just the driver
undertaking such dangerous acts.
“All drivers have a responsibility to their fellow road users to drive
with care and diligence, which starts by correcting these potentially
fatal behaviours,” he said.
“Driving can be dangerous even when you’re paying full attention
to the road conditions, so to attempt to talk or check emails or texts
while in control of a moving vehicle is incredibly reckless behaviour.”
“We need to create a deterrent for this type of behaviour sooner
rather than later - we owe it to all Tasmanians to ensure our roads
are as safe as possible.”
The current penalty for being caught while driving without a hands-
free device is $300 and three demerit points, which is almost double
the cost of most hands free devices.
- the statistics:
Source: Nature – Research – Analytics – Insights, online survey
conducted for RACT Insurance with a representative group of
632 Tasmanians between 14/10/14 and 22/10/14)
Regularly use a phone without use of hands free:
Check messages or emails while driving:
Easily distracted by GPS, Radio or phone:
As a homeowner, fire safety should be a number one priority for you
and your family, as the actions you take to protect your home could
be the difference between minor and major damage.
Some simple ways to prepare your property in the event of a bushfire
include keeping an eye on excess or uncontrolled plant growth, and
ensuring gutters are clear of leaves on both your home and shed.
It is also worthwhile getting large trees trimmed back and regularly
mowing your lawn.
Just as importantly though, all green waste needs to be disposed
of correctly, rather than leaving it to dry out somewhere on your
property, posing a significant fire risk.
The Tasmanian Fire Service has a number of resources on its
website, including a Bushfire Survival Plan and a bushfire checklist,
as well as information on how to ember-proof your home ahead of
The State Government also manages the TasAlert website, which
links to the State Emergency Services (SES), Tasmania Police and
the Tasmanian Fire Service, with the aim of providing a central
location for all information in times of emergency.
RACT Insurance is also aware that many policy holders are
underinsured, which when faced with the devastation of losing your
home, is the last thing you want to hear.
As such, we would encourage all policy holders to review their home
and contents insurance policies and ensure any new purchases are
included and all valuables are covered.
RACT Insurance understands it can be difficult when it comes to
estimating the worth of your home and its contents, which is why we
have a useful home and contents valuation guide on our website.
Visit www.ract.com.au for more information.
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