By Mitchell Clarke
Clyde Road in Berwick has been dubbed one of Melbourne’s most dangerous crash hotspots, according to new data.
Figures released by insurance company AAMI’s 2020 Crash Index, identified Melbourne as the country’s crash capital, after 350,000 accident insurance claims were analysed nationally from 1 July 2019 to 30 June 2020.
The bustling Clyde Road was one of six new roads across Victoria to be feature in the state’s top 10 most dangerous roads.
It was ranked the ninth most dangerous road and the only listed road within the Casey or Cardinia local government areas.
AAMI spokesperson Paul Sofronoff said the crash hotspots were generally major arterial roads that intersect with local streets through high traffic industrial and shopping precincts.
He said the Crash Index was a real-time reminder for drivers to remain alert when behind the wheel.
“The fact that we have so many new entries this year, just goes to show that accidents really can happen anywhere at any time – so it pays to follow the road rules, drive to the speed limit and always be vigilant,” Mr Sofronoff said.
“Regardless of the day or time, or whether you’re driving through one of the identified hotspots or just down to the local shops, every time you get behind the wheel we urge drivers to maintain focus on the task at hand, follow the speed limit and abide by all road rules.”
The data also revealed the most common type of crash were nose to tail collisions.
“Driver distraction is a leading cause of nose to tail collisions, and to avoid them, drivers need to concentrate more on what’s happening in front of them and less on multitasking,” Mr Sofronoff added.
“Tailgating is another behaviour that can lead to nose to tail collisions – especially during peak hour traffic. Maintaining a good distance between you and the car in front is one of the most effective ways of keeping yourself and others safe and allows additional time to stop if the car in front suddenly brakes.”
Claims data also identified Fridays to be the most dangerous day of the week for crashes across the country, with afternoon peak hour being the worst time.
Federal La Trobe MP Jason Wood, whose office is based in Berwick, said he wasn’t shocked with the findings, labelling Clyde Road “a notorious stretch”.
“It’s a major issue when it comes to congestion. It just drives me nuts,” he said.
In 2019, Mr Wood announced he had secured $40 million in Federal funding to add a third lane in both directions of Clyde Road.
But he’s calling for the project, which is being carried out by the State Government, to be fast-tracked.
“The money is on the table, we’re just waiting for the works to begin. Residents are getting frustrated, we just want to know when the works will start,” he said.
“We’ve got the fastest growing electorate in the country, they have to fast track these things. There’s really no excuse to drag this out and I can’t for the life of me see why it would take two years to carry out scoping works.”