Which country is the worst in Australia’s worst road toll?

An average of 1,632 Australians die each year in road crashes, according to new data.

The number of fatalities on Australian roads rose by 7.3 per cent to 4,921 in the 12 months to March 31, 2016, according a report from the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS).

In New South Wales, the rate rose by 1.7 per cent, and Victoria had the highest rate of road deaths with 2,898.

The latest ABS figures show that in March 2016, there were 5,073 fatalities in NSW, compared with 3,664 the year before.

This is a figure that rises to 7.6 per cent in Queensland and 7.9 per cent for Victoria.

There are four ways in which Australia can reduce its road deaths, said Professor Michael Suckling, a road safety researcher at Curtin University in Australia.

The first is to make it safer to drive.

The ABS reported that while traffic accidents were rising in the country, they were also decreasing by 5.1 per cent over the past 12 months.

This, in turn, means more people are able to drive safely and reduce road deaths.

“The key is to get more people on the roads, and the longer we can make the roads safer, the better it is for all Australians,” Professor Suckley said.

There is also the matter of how much better the roads are for the people driving them, he said.

Professor Sucklings research found that drivers were more likely to take the riskier route when compared to the safe option.

“In particular, drivers are more likely when they are travelling with someone who is not licensed to drive,” he said, pointing to the risk of a driver being pulled over for a broken taillight or a broken arm.

“So when someone is not properly licensed, it is much more likely that they will be involved in a crash,” he explained.

This also meant drivers were less likely to stay in their lane and the road was more likely, even in wet conditions, to be closed down to prevent accidents.

There was also an increased risk of road rage.

“Drivers have a tendency to take more aggressive actions,” Professor Steven O’Sullivan, a professor of health and safety science at Curtford University, told the ABC.

“People react to that and they are more prone to start a car chase or an altercation.”

Dr Tom Danko, a leading road safety expert, said drivers were driving at the very end of their life expectancy.

“We are living in the era of road fatalities,” Dr Dankos said.

“Road deaths are a major health problem in Australia, they are a big cost of doing business, and they have a significant impact on quality of life.”

He said there were two main reasons why Australians were more prone than people in other developed countries to die in road accidents.

“One is that we have much lower life expectancy than people elsewhere,” Dr Kallistos said, referring to the number of deaths in Australia that exceed the national average.

“This means that we are not driving as many miles as other people in the developed world.”

Australia has one of the highest road fatalities rates in the world, but Professor Sucker said there was still a way to go.

“Australia has been able to reduce the number in road fatalities by a very significant amount in recent years,” he told the BBC.

“But it’s still a big problem in other parts of the world where there are far more road deaths than Australia.”

Professor Sucker, who is also a researcher in the department of obstetrics and gynecology at the University of New South Australia, said there had been a reduction in the number and severity of crashes in Australia in recent times, which was good news.

“I think we can be really proud of the progress that we’ve made in reducing road deaths in the past three or four years,” Professor Kallis said.