Walking and cycling aren’t dangerous

…cycling itself isn’t an inherently dangerous activity; it’s the car-first street design that makes it so.

Chris Bruntlett via LinkedIn

No person should be killed or seriously injured

The National Road Safety Strategy has adopted Vision Zero – where no loss of life or serious injury is considered acceptable. This methodology accepts that people can make mistakes – and therefore our streets should be designed so that small mistakes (e.g. by people driving) do not lead to the death or serious injury of other road users (e.g. people walking or cycling).

Image credit: National Road Safety Strategy 2021-2030 draft

Victoria has adopted Towards Zero, a similar vision for a future free of deaths and serious injuries on our roads.

Image credit: Towards Zero

Yarra has also adopted Towards Zero:

Safe System

The core of Australia’s National Road Safety Strategy 2011–2020 and Victoria’s 2013-2022 Victorian Road Safety Strategy is Safe System.

Safe System in Europe

In the Netherlands Safe System is known as Sustainable Safety:

Safe System in Yarra

Council does conduct Safe System audits for major projects, such as the protected bicycle lanes in Elizabeth Street.

Safe System audit for Elizabeth Street. Source: Council agenda 3rd December 2019.

Road Safety Star Ratings

Star ratings provide an easy way for people to understand how safe their local street is. In Australia the system is known as AusRAP, the Australian Road Assessment Program. Star ratings can be used to guide priorities for investment.

Image credit: RACV
Image credit: AusRAP
Image credit: iRAP

Star rating in Yarra

Yarra’s Safe Travel Strategy 2016-2026 includes an action to use AusRAP to assess the safety of all roads in Yarra.

Source: Safe Travel Strategy 2016-2026

The Safe Travel Strategy 2019 Progress Report (presented to Council on 3rd December 2019) shows that internal consultation is scheduled to begin in 2021 with the action to be completed by 2023. This will be a valuable report, helping ratepayers to understand why improvements are required and helping Council to prioritise investment.

Source: Safe Travel Strategy 2019 Progress Report


Safety is important, both from an ethical perspective, to mitigate the negative consequences of road trauma, and from a functional perspective, to enable and encourage people to walk and cycle in an effort to mitigate the negative consequences of traffic congestion, air pollution and climate change.

How you can help

You can help by appearing on the Streets Alive Yarra website as a champion for your local street, neighbourhood, or school.

Let’s build a beautiful, liveable and accessible city