Most rear-enders cost more than $110,000 each: study

MACKAY drivers may hold the key to reducing the little bingles costing our economy millions of dollars a year.

An APN Newsdesk analysis of State Government data reveals there were 1486 front-to-tail crashes on the region's roads between 2001-2013.

Just over two thirds - or 1017 - of these happened while vehicles were travelling below 80kmh.

Researchers estimate rear-enders cost our economy big time - $114,500 each for those in the 80kmh or less range and $177,000 for crashes above 80kmh.

The financial impact covers a range of factors including medical and rehabilitation, lost productivity and damage to road infrastructure.

Centre for Accident Research & Road Safety Queensland researcher Dr Judy Fleiter is trying to find out how we can reduce rear-enders and she needs Mackay drivers to take part in a quick online survey.

The Queensland University of Technology academic said statistics showed most drivers followed other vehicles too closely.

"The key to reducing nose-to-tail crashes is to help people understand the importance of keeping a safe distance from other traffic on the road and work out the best way to help people decide what that distance is," she said.

"What this study aims to do is to find out how drivers decide how close to follow another vehicle and whether their ideas of a safe following distance change according to different driving conditions.

"For example, are drivers tailgating because they're disobeying the rules or because they don't know the rules? We know that when people are travelling too close to the vehicle in front, they are putting themselves and others in danger. Now we'd like to work out better ways of reducing this danger."

To join the study visit

Mackay rear-enders by speed zone 2001-2013:

100-110kmh: 183 crashes

80-90kmh: 264

70kmh: 22

60kmh: 918

0-50kmh: 99

Total crashes: 1486

Source: Queensland Government; Centre for Accident Research & Road Safety - Queensland