NRMA Insurance claims data has shown collisions at stop signs are an emerging road safety issue so we’re calling on drivers to be cautious.
Our 2013 stop sign collision data1 reveals that:
- 75% of accidents happened because the driver failed to stop
- 25% occurred when the drivers were actually stopped at a stop sign and someone went into the back of their vehicle.
Everyone needs to stop
NRMA Insurance's Head of Research, Robert McDonald, says we need to remind ourselves that the road rules are there to protect drivers and other road users and help prevent collisions.
"When drivers arrive at a stop sign, they must stop completely before reaching the unbroken line, giving way to all cars and pedestrians approaching or crossing the intersection.”
Not there to annoy
Stop signs are there for a reason and that's to recognise that there is a risk of a serious cross traffic collision.
By getting into the habit of stopping again we’ll prevent even more accidents says McDonald.
“We would suggest a large proportion of the rear-end collisions that occur at stop signs are due to people expecting the car in front to only slow down rather than stop like they do.
Unfortunately, it's now all too common to actually surprise the driver behind by obeying the stop sign."
Know the rules
Not stopping at a stop sign also involves three demerit points and a significant fine.2
"We're also urging drivers to know how to use all traffic controls such as roundabouts, stop and give way signs to help prevent unnecessary collisions and subsequent injuries," says McDonald.
Stop the distractions
We surveyed 2,500 Australian drivers in 2013 and found that over 30% admitted that they've been distracted and failed to stop at a stop sign.3
It’s an alarming figure when you also consider video footage we studied from a number of intersections around Sydney that show many cars driving straight through stop signs and some only slowing down slightly.
"It's critical drivers always stay alert while at the wheel, losing focus for even a split second puts you at greater risk of a collision," says McDonald.
1Based on NRMA Insurance comprehensive motor claims data for the 2013 calendar year
3Based on a survey of 2,500 Australian drivers by Pure Profile Research in August 2013