Message from the Chief Commissioner

Victoria Police Road Safety Strategy 2013-2018

Release date: Fri 23 August 2013

Last updated: Tue 20 August 2013

Road to Zero


Victoria Police is committed to reducing road trauma and enhancing community safety on our roads. Each week five people die and almost 100 people are seriously injured through vehicle collisions. Many of these deaths and injuries are preventable, with speed, drugs and alcohol, inexperience and driver error accounting for a significant percentage of this trauma.

Victoria has been a world leader in road safety and has achieved considerable reductions in road trauma over the past decade. Some of our recent road policing achievements include: the introduction of roadside drug testing, use of the Automated Number Plate Recognition system, implementation of the vehicle impoundment legislation and input into the development of the National Heavy Vehicle Regulator. Further, we have seen the development of the Road Policing Investigator's Course and the enhancement of road policing leadership through the establishment of the Road Policing Command. 

Over the next five years, we will face new complexities and challenges on our roads as Victoria continues to grow. With higher density living and significant developments in business and trade, we will expect to see greater traffic volumes, more scooters and motorcycles and an increased heavy vehicle presence. To maintain our position as leaders in road policing and meet future challenges, road safety must become a whole of Victoria Police and community responsibility. Together, we will continue to make our roads and community safer.

All members must play an active role in addressing unsafe behaviour on our roads, creating a hostile environment for high risk offenders and embedding a strong road safety culture in Victoria. As an organisation, we will focus on harm minimisation and in developing initiatives to minimise potential harm on our roads.

The Victoria Police Road Safety Strategy has been developed in line with the Decade of Action for Road Safety 2011-2020, the National and Victorian road safety strategies and the Victoria Police BluePrint 2012-2015. It contains three key priorities: building our road policing capabilities; enhancing our enforcement and prevention, and working in partnership with the community and our road safety partners. The Safe System approach, which is recognised globally, is a key feature of the partnership component. The Safe System approach aspires to create a transport system in which human mistakes on our roads do not result in death and serious injury. It focuses on the key pillars of the road transport system that impact on safety, including road users, travel speed, vehicles and roads and roadsides.

I am very proud of what our members have achieved to date in the area of road policing and am confident this will continue. This strategy has been developed through listening to our members, examining the research and intelligence and working with our partners. I urge all members to commit to achieving this strategy's goals and to work together to reduce Victorian road trauma and make our roads safer. 

Ken D. Lay APM,
Chief Commissioner



Trauma associated with use of our road system is significant and unacceptable. In 2012, 282 people lost their lives on Victorian roads, with serious injuries affecting more than 5,500 people. The economic cost of road trauma per year is estimated to be in the vicinity of three billion dollars. The human cost of road trauma is profound and lifelong.

The Victoria Police Blueprint 2012-2015 identifies road policing as an integral part to achieving community safety in Victoria. The Victoria Police Road Safety Strategy 2013-2018 provides the policing framework for reducing road trauma and making our roads safer. It is led by the Chief Commissioner, Victoria Police Executive Command and Road Policing Command. The strategy adopts the National and Victorian long term vision for road safety and works towards achieving the Victorian government 10 year road trauma reduction targets.

  • Long term vision: Zero deaths and serious injuries on our roads.
  • Targets: Less than 200 deaths and 3,850 serious injuries on our roads by 2022.

Development of the strategy

The Victoria Police Road Safety Strategy and associated action plans were developed through extensive internal and external consultation. This included focus group discussions with all highway patrol areas, online contributions from operational and corporate employees and input from road policing managers and Victoria Police Executive Command. A comprehensive review of the literature and an analysis of our road trauma intelligence was also undertaken. External stakeholders also provided a valuable contribution. The strategy and action plans provide a solid evidence base for which to move forward. With the right direction, right people and passion we will continue to make a difference on our roads.


Setting direction


Zero deaths and serious injuries on Victorian roads.


Less than 200 fatalities and 3,850 serious injuries on our roads by 2022.


To reduce road trauma and create safer Victorian roads by enhancing our road policing knowledge, skills, technology and enforcement, while working closely with our road safety partners and the community to embed the Safe System approach.


  1. Building our road policing capabilities
  2. Enhancing our enforcement and prevention
  3. Working in partnership

How will we know we are successful?

  • A shift in community attitudes and behaviour on our roads, particularly in relation to speeding, impaired driving, driver distraction  and seat belt compliance.
  • Road trauma reduction is in line with achieving less than 200 deaths and 3850 serious injuries on Victorian roads by 2022.
  • An increase in community confidence of safety on our roads.

Strategy structure

The strategy is structured around the three key priorities. 

The first section relates to building our road policing capabilities for the future and addresses culture, intelligence, education and equipment and technology.

The second section is about enhancing our enforcement and prevention and establishes our enforcement philosophy and five year focus.

The third section addresses working in partnership with the community and our road safety partners and identifies how we will strengthen and advance this collaboration.

Achieving road safety requires a whole of organisation approach that engages the community and our road safety partners and uses  intelligence, evidence based findings and innovative thinking to inform its practices.

Building our road policing capabilities

Strategic direction

To build our road policing capabilities to be able to identify, understand and respond to road trauma in the future.


As we look to the future, there will be more people, more vehicles, more cyclists and more pedestrians on our roads. There will be more older people travelling, a greater heavy vehicle presence and more motorcycles and scooters in the community. Victoria Police needs to be prepared for this environment and to understand and meet its challenges and demands.

What we know

To be prepared for the future, we need to invest in building our road policing capabilities now. This includes embedding a culture that recognises road policing as a shared responsibility across the organisation and community, developing our road policing education, improving our intelligence capabilities and tasking and coordination processes and embracing new and innovative road policing  equipment and technology. Further, we need to enhance our performance and evaluation tools to ensure we are maximising our efforts  and achieving the best results possible.

Overall aims

  1. To embed road safety as a whole of Victoria Police and community responsibility
  2. To strengthen our road policing intelligence, tasking and coordination processes and assessment and evaluation tools.
  3. To enhance our road policing education.
  4. To invest in contemporary and innovative equipment and technology.


Strategic direction

To embed road safety as a whole of Victoria Police and community responsibility.


Road trauma kills more people than any form of crime and has a significant ripple effect on the entire community. Road safety is the responsibility of all Victorians.

What we know

We know that visible active enforcement on the roads is  a key factor to lowering road trauma and that through 'every day' interaction with our road users we can make a difference to road safety.

To continue to enhance our capacity to keep our roads safe, all members must take an active role in addressing unsafe behaviour on our roads and in developing a strong road safety culture.

As police, we are all leaders in road safety. It is only through a whole of organisation and strengthened community approach that we will continue to achieve reductions in road trauma and safer Victorian roads.

Our goals are to:

  • Set clear organisational expectations of employees in addressing unsafe road user behaviour.
  • Provide effective leadership through Road Policing Command.
  • Develop and implement a cultural change framework for embedding road safety across the organisation and ensuring all members are engaged in addressing unsafe road user behaviours.
  • Instil in police that they are role models for the community in relation to road safety.
  • Promote the seriousness of traffic offences as criminal behaviour.
  • Develop effective accountability measures to ensure established standards are met.
  • Work with our road safety partners and the community to enhance community ownership of road safety and influence and change poor driver behaviours.
  • Recognise high performance through the existing Honours and Awards system, as well as introducing an Annual Road Policing Award.

Road safety is a whole of organisation and community  responsibility. All members must take an active role in addressing unsafe behaviour on our roads.

Intelligence, Tasking and Coordination and Assessment and Evaluation

Strategic Direction

To strengthen our road policing  intelligence, tasking and coordination processes and assessment and evaluation tools.


Intelligence underpins and influences how we deliver our road policing services. It enables us to understand the problems, predict future risks and prioritise and task our resources accordingly. Along with research and consultation, intelligence forms the foundation base with which we use to influence change and advance. It also assists us to assess and evaluate our practices and to continually adapt our enforcement to achieve the maximum results.

What we know

International, national, state and local level understanding is needed about road safety and road trauma to effectively enhance our enforcement and prevention approach. This requires effective information gathering tools, strong analytical capabilities and efficient communication processes. Assessment and evaluation tools are also needed to measure our impact and inform future enforcement.

Our goals are to:

  • Develop standards for road policing intelligence collection, analysis and reporting to enhance understanding and better inform the development of effective road policing responses.
  • Improve tasking and coordination processes to ensure road policing resources are deployed for maximum impact, including the implementation of electronic live intelligence tasking.
  • Improve intelligence sharing capabilities between agencies to enhance engagement and the development of holistic solutions.
  • Integrate Victoria Police databases that capture road policing statistics to enhance accessibility and standard of data.
  • Enhance evaluation measures to improve our understanding of the effectiveness and efficiency of road policing on reducing road trauma.

Intelligence enables us to understand the problems and  future risks and to prioritise our enforcement and resources accordingly.


Strategic Direction

To enhance road policing education.


Our people are the key to achieving effective road policing outcomes. No matter how good our systems and intelligence are, it is our people who will determine our success. Therefore, it is vital that we commit to developing our people and investing in the enhancement of our training.

What we know

To achieve optimal road safety outcomes we need professionals who are trained to identify and analyse problems early, conduct quality investigations and work proactively to develop preventative road safety measures. We need members who can think holistically and integrate and apply traffic, crime and safety knowledge because offenders who commit crimes on the road may well be committing crimes elsewhere.

Our goals are to:

  • Develop and professionalise road policing.
  • Assess and develop competency based skill sets for road policing practitioners to meet current and future service delivery requirements.
  • Continue to develop and enhance foundation level training.
  • Integrate road policing training across Victoria Police capability programs, including specialist areas.
  • Improve the standard of collision investigations and confidence of members in investigating collisions and charging offenders with serious offences.
  • Enhance members' awareness of the Safe System model and the role of enforcement within this model.

Our people are the key to our success. Therefore, it is imperative that we invest in their education and training.

Equipment and Technology

Strategic Direction

To research and invest in contemporary and innovative equipment and technology.


Victoria has led the world with initiatives such as the mandatory wearing of seatbelts, random breath testing, road safety cameras and its blackspot program. It is vital that Victoria Police continues to remain at the forefront of emerging technologies and to embed their application within its road policing practices.

What we know

The Victorian road safety landscape is constantly changing, bringing with it new problems and challenges for us to address. It is important that we continue to research and invest in new equipment and technology to maintain the capacity to enforce existing and emerging issues.

Our goals are to:

  • Integrate contemporary and emerging technologies into our road policing fleet, such as Blue Net, Automated Number Plate Recognition, Mobile Data Terminals and In Car Video.
  • Enhance our drug testing capability.
  • Improve equipment and technology in relation to distraction offences, tailgating, speed detection, speed measurement and collision investigation.
  • Investigate the feasibility of an electronic infringement system.
  • Assess alternative vehicle impoundment options.
  • Strengthen our drink driving enforcement capability.
  • Review and improve the operational effectiveness and
    efficiency of all existing road policing resources.

Victoria Police will remain at the forefront of emerging technologies.

Enhancing our enforcement and prevention

Strategic Direction

To influence and change poor road user behaviours contributing to road trauma through enhancing our enforcement and prevention.Victoria Police works collaboratively and responds to stakeholder expectations.


Road trauma is complex in that there are a range of factors which contribute to collisions. As such, a multifaceted evidence based approach is needed to tackle such trauma; one that can address state-wide issues, yet is sufficiently flexible to target local needs.

What we know

  • High visible active enforcement increases the perceived and actual risk of detection, resulting in improved road user behaviour.
  • Speed management is critical to reducing road trauma; even minor reductions in driving speeds will make an important contribution to reducing trauma.
  • Enforcement activities supported by proactive media campaigns are stronger and more effective than isolated measures.
  • Enforcement that integrates road policing and crime has a broader impact.
  • A combination of general and specific deterrence strategies is needed to reduce road trauma

Our goals are to:

Over the next five years, our goal is to influence and change poor road user behaviours contributing to Victorian road trauma. We will do this by applying research, intelligence and stakeholder input to develop informed and tailored enforcement and prevention measures, as well as implementing broader general deterrence strategies. Four key behaviours and six road user groups have been identified as key focus areas for the next five years.

Key target behaviours

Impaired driving
- Drink driving/riding
- Drug driving/riding
- Fatigue
Seat belts

Key road user groups
Vulnerable road users

- Pedestrians
- Cyclists
- Motorcyclists
- Young drivers/riders
- Older drivers/riders
Intentional high risk drivers/riders
Heavy vehicles
Unauthorised drivers
Recidivist offenders
Country road users

Road trauma is complex and requires a multi-faceted evidence based approach.

Working in partnership

Strategic Direction

To work in partnership with the community and our road safety partners to deliver effective road safety outcomes, embed the Safe System approach and build a strong road safety culture.


Victoria is continuing its commitment to the Safe System approach to road safety. This model recognises that although people will  inevitably make mistakes, the system itself should prevent fatalities or serious injuries when collisions occur. It focuses on improving road
user behaviour, travel speeds, vehicles and the roads and roadside environments. Effective partnerships and community engagement are critical in implementing the Safe System approach.

What we know

Road Safety cannot be achieved in isolation. It requires professionals from a range of backgrounds working together to ensure a holistic understanding of the issues and the development of integrated solutions.

Our goals are to:

  • Promote and drive the importance of road safety as a community imperative, with a specific focus on the elderly and young road users.
  • Embed an active and effective partnership approach to road safety so that community and stakeholder engagement becomes a core part of road policing business.
  • Influence and change poor driver behaviours contributing to road trauma.
  • Progress the Safe System approach to road safety in Victoria
  • Work collaboratively to influence and develop legislative and policy change that improves road safety and enhances our enforcement capacity.
  • Enhance the capacity of Victorians to take ownership and responsibility for road safety.
  • Ensure effective alignment of media and enforcement to achieve maximum impact of key road safety messages

Road safety is a whole of Victoria Police responsibility that requires a holistic and integrated approach with the community and our partners.

How will we achieve the strategy

Strategy and Action Plan

Achieving this strategy's goals is dependent upon a whole of organisation commitment to road safety, active and effective engagement with our partners, intelligence and evidence based enforcement and the passion of our people to make it happen.

This strategy establishes the Victoria Police direction for the next five years for road policing and is supported by a series of action plans. The action plans set out the activities and performance activity indicators for achieving our goals. They contain mandatory items, yet also provide the flexibility for divisions to address local drivers of road trauma.

All areas will be accountable for their role in this strategy through Compstat and established reporting processes. Compstat will also act as a learning environment for sharing ideas and improving performance. Road Policing Command will be held to account through regular performance reporting.

In summary, we are aiming to:

  • Reduce fatalities on our roads to less than 200 deaths by 2022.
  • Have less than 3,850 serious injuries on our roads by 2022.
  • Change community attitudes and behaviours in relation to speeding, impaired driving, distraction and seat belt compliance.
  • Increase community confidence of safety on our roads.

We will do this by:

  • Building our road policing capabilities through embedding road safety as a shared responsibility across the organisation, enhancing our intelligence and education and investing in new equipment and technology.
  • Deploying evidence and tailored based enforcement, supported by state-wide road policing operations and initiatives that target road safety issues.
  • Ensuring active and effective community and stakeholder engagement to develop integrated and holistic approaches to address road safety, influence and change poor road user behaviours and build community perceptions of safety on our roads.

Road Policing Command will assume overall responsibility for implementing, monitoring and evaluating this strategy and associated action plans.


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