Australia's most dangerous roads

Sydney city traffic
Business News

Sydney's M4 Western Motorway from Concord to the M7 has been deemed the worst stretch of road in both NSW and Australia’s national highway network.

The motorway was one of two major Sydney roads featured in the worst 10, with the Hume Highway from the South Western Motorway to Narellan Road ranked the third worst in Australia.

The best performing stretch of road in NSW was the Sturt Highway from Wagga to Narrandera, according to a report by the Australian Roads Assessment Program (AusRAP).

However, Sydney drivers shouldn't be disheartened by the report, as upgrades are underway to a number of NSW roads including the Pacific Highway, Western Motorway and Great Western Highway.

On average, more than 100 Australians die on the road every month. Around 2,500 or more are seriously injured.

— The Australian Road Assessment Program (AusRAP)

NRMA Chairman Kyle Loades says the report highlights how much work is still needed to get our highways up to an acceptably safe standard. 

“Motorists in NSW can take heart from the results of this report, because of the top 10 worst highways in NSW, most have upgrades underway, which will improve the safety of these roads and save lives,” says Mr Loades. 

He points to specific examples of  the Pacific Highway upgrade being completed in the next three years and how crucial WestConnex will be to solving the traffic crisis in Sydney on Parramatta Road and the M4/ Western Motorway. 

Meanwhile, the Federal Highway from the NSW border to Antill Street in the ACT has been listed in the top 10 best sections, with just four crashes and no fatalities. But NRMA Director Kate Lundy warns against becoming complacent.  

“Nationwide, 2016 has not been a good year on our roads and if we don’t maintain our highways to a safe standard more lives will be lost,” she says. 

The highways with the highest crash and fatality rates in Australia

1. NSW: M4 Western Motorway — Parramatta Road, Concord to M7 Westlink

2. TAS: M2/A2 Bass Highway — Nine Mile Road to Stowport Road

3. NSW: M31 Hume Motorway — South Western Motorway/M5 to Narellan Road, Campbelltown

4. QLD: M1 Pacific Motorway — Gateway Motorway to Logan Motorway

5. TAS: A8 East Tamar Highway — Alanvale Connector to Dalrymple Road

6. QLD: M1 Pacific Motorway — Smith Street Freeway to NSW border

7. TAS: M1 Midland Highway — Evandale Main Road to Howick Street

8. QLD: M1 Pacific Motorway — Logan Motorway to Smith Street Freeway

9. QLD: A1 Bruce Highway — Sarina to Mackay

10. WA: M1 Great Northern / Victoria Highway — Kununnurra turn-off to the Northern Territory border 

AusRAP is an analysis of almost 21,000km of highway using ‘Risk Mapping’, which measures the crash history of a stretch of road over its traffic volumes.

In total, 20,664 kilometres of highways comprising the National Land Transport Network have been assessed in this report.

During the period from 2010 to 2014, there were 15,339 casualty crashes on this network across Australia. These casualty crashes included 924 deaths, and showed almost 800 crashes and six deaths have occurred on the M4 Western Motorway from Concord to the M7 alone during this time period.

To read the report in full or further explore the interactive map of the best and worst highways in Australia, visit:

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