There are fears Victorians are suffering from "collective brain fade" as the state records its highest road toll in a decade and people failing to wear seatbelts are among those killed.
So far in 2019, 113 people have died on Victorian roads compared with 74 at the same time last year, marking the worst start to a year since 2008.
Victoria Police Assistant Commissioner Stephen Leane said the state's reputation as one of the safest places in the world to drive was being challenged.
"We're having a shocking year this year. I just wonder whether as a community we're having a collective brain fade and we all just need to think about it," he told Melbourne radio 3AW on Wednesday.
Of the people who died, 18 weren't wearing seatbelts.
Mr Leane said it appeared all of them chose not to wear a seatbelt and a "significant number" could have been saved if they had.
Over the Easter long weekend, 350 people were fined for not wearing seatbelts.
People killed in car crashes were also more likely to have drugs in their system than alcohol.
The state government on Wednesday called an emergency road safety summit for May 31 to try to stem the deaths.
It will include experts from the Transport Accident Commission, VicRoads, Victoria Police, Monash University Accident Research Centre, RACV, Road Trauma Support Services Victoria and motorcycle and cycling advocates.
Community discussions will be held across regional Victoria, which is over-represented in the road toll.
There have been 72 deaths in the regions this year, compared with 41 in Melbourne.
The government and police are blaming driver distraction, speed and substance-affected driving for the rise.
Premier Daniel Andrews told reporters on Wednesday his government had a history of acting on advice from professionals, but also took a shot at the federal government over funding to Victoria.
"We can do so much more if we had that partner in Canberra who knew where Victoria was, that would be a start, and then beyond that had a real commitment to using the gift of government to achieve things," he said.
Australian Associated Press