Renewing Australia's LCV fleet could save 1,300 lives
Reducing the age of Australia's light-vehicle fleet by just one year would save more than 1,300 lives over the next 20 years, says the Australian Automobile Association.
A recently commissioned report by the AAA shows that the average age of Australia's light-vehicle fleet is 10.4 years. That is much higher than in other developed nations, and has remained consistently so over the past years. The average age of the Australian passenger car fleet is not much better, at 9.8 years.
In a statement, the AAA said that “an overall reduction of just a single year in the age of the light vehicle fleet would yield a 5.4 per cent reduction in road crashes, deliver road trauma and emission reduction benefits worth $19.7 (€12.85) billion over 20 years and directly save the government AU$3.3 (€2.15) billion over the same period”.
Following the report, the AAA advocates abolishing tariffs and taxes instated to protect Australia's car manufacturing industry – which has expired in the past few years anyway. That fiscal burden adds almost AU$5 (€3.26) billion to new-car prices in Australia over the next four years, the association calculates. Specifically, the AAA calls for the abolition of the 5% tariff on imported vehicles, and for an end to the Luxury Car Tax.
“Getting Australians into newer cars will deliver real safety and environmental benefits for the community”, says Michael Br adley, CEO of the AAA. Based on other aspects of the report, the AAA also argues for more investment in road infrastructure (to reduce road injuries and fatalities), as well as a range of measures to reduce congestion and pollution.