Friday, May 25, 2012

Queensland's Out Here Campaign

Somewhere in the year 2010 Queenslanders were first introduced to the 'Out Here' campaign for motorcycle safety.  It featured a tv ad component:

There are lots of factors that influence motorcycle safety and fatality and serious injury trends.  But the trends for Queensland in the years leading up to, and following the release of this campaign are as follows:

2005-06:  Fatalities - 64; Hospitalisation - 896 (Vic fatalities: 48)
2006-07:  Fatalities - 69; Hospitalisation - 931 (Vic fatalities: 47)
2007-08:  Fatalities - 69; Hospitalisation - 973 (Vic fatalities: 45)
2008-09:  Fatalities - 79; Hospitalisation - 971 (Vic fatalities: 43)
2009-10:  Fatalities - 40; Hospitalisation - 838 (Vic fatalities: 38)
2010-11:  Fatalities - 49; Hospitalisation - 770 (Vic fatalities: 49)

(The figures are recorded by financial year, July - June.  The campaign began somewhere in the last two reporting periods, exactly when I am not sure of.)

Like Victoria, Queensland has seen a large jump in motorcycle registrations during this same period:
2005: 109,258
2006: 124,511
2007: 138,661
2008: 152,289
2009: 157,597
2010: 161,276

I am not qualified to draw the causality bow in response to these high level figures.  But the data clearly tells us that in 2009 - 2010 there was a turn around in the trends of motorcycle accidents and fatalities in Queensland.  If I were involved with this campaign, trying to drive down the number of motorcycle fatalities in that state, I would look upon those numbers with a sense of satisfaction and pride.  Clearly dropping from 79 fatalities in 2008-2009 to 40 in 2009-2010 is a great outcome, and to whatever extent this campaign is responsible for that, those involved with it should be extremely proud.

My thesis, which I am not really qualified to make and am completely unable to verify, is this:

Motorcycle safety campaigns that positively or sympathetically engage the motorcycling community are more successful than those that are do not.  I hope that we can see a positive, sympathetically engaging campaign run in Victoria so that we can test this thesis ourselves.

My sincere thanks to Data Analysis team of Queensland's Department of Transport and Main Roads for providing the figures cited herein.  In case there is any doubt, they have provided me with raw figures only; any conclusions drawn or hypotheses presented are purely my own.

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