THE nature of social media means that good news travels more quickly today than has ever been the case.
But the nature of us as humans means that bad news travels even faster – and that has always been the case.
The shocking news on Wednesday morning that a teenager had died in a single vehicle crash near Eglinton left us all feeling deflated.
Every Bathurst parent would have instinctively put themselves in the shoes of that young man's mother and father and silently wondered how we would have coped if it had been us receiving that terrible early-morning call from police.
Every road fatality is a tragedy but it is so much worse when it is a young person just finding their way in the world.
Police have done their investigation into the causes surrounding the crash and it will now be up to the coroner to make a final determination about the facts, but those details mean little when weighed against the reality of the loss of a young life.
But while we may not yet know what happened on Eleven Mile Drive around 1am on Wednesday we do know that incidents similar to this are occurring far too often - and right across the country.
Young drivers are vastly over-represented in crash statistics and it is a trend that has continued for decades.
According to Transport for NSW, despite making up only about 15 per cent of all licence holders, younger drivers represent almost a quarter of annual road fatalities.
And every one of those deaths touches countless family and friends, changing their lives forever.
NSW Traffic and Highway Patrol commander Assistant Commissioner Michael Corboy previously had this advice for all drivers: “Before you venture out on the road, ask yourself the question; What can I do today to survive? What action can I take to ensure that I, and people around me, are not at risk of being injured or killed on the road?”
It’s a powerful message for every driver that gets behind the wheel.
Police are aiming for a road toll of zero and dedicate millions of dollars in resources every year to try and make that a reality.
And while we likely will never get there, that should be the aim for all of us.
The legacy of too many deaths on the road must be an awareness that none of us is bullet-proof – young or old.