Transport for NSW has welcomed research that suggests heavy vehicles fitted with crash avoidance technology could result in 25 per cent fewer fatal accidents.
The organisation’s Centre for Road Safety, in conjunction with NRMA Motoring and Services, said a Monash University study exploring the benefits of four innovations targeting heavy vehicle mishaps could greatly enhance driver safety behind the wheel.
Figures from Transport for NSW show that while only 2 per cent of registered motors are heavy vehicles, they are involved in nearly one-fifth (17 per cent) of road accidents.
People who are injured in car crashes are often eligible for compensation, while family members of those killed in an incident involving a vehicle may also be able to make a claim.
Marg Prendergast, Centre for Road Safety general manager, said an abundance of research has already been conducted regarding the advantages of crash avoidance technology for regular cars.
“This is really the first time we’ve had some insight into the real-world benefits that could be delivered if they were fitted to all heavy vehicles,” Ms Prendergast stated.
“With an increase in heavy vehicle registrations across Australia, we will potentially see more heavy vehicle crashes in the future, which is concerning as these crashes are more likely to result in a fatality or serious injury.”
Car accident injury prevention
Monash University’s Accident Research Centre examined four crash-prevention technologies: electronic stability control, lane departure warning systems, fatigue warning systems and autonomous emergency brakes.
NRMA Vehicle Safety Expert Jack Haley said the results showed autonomous emergency brakes were the most successful at reducing the likelihood of fatal heavy vehicle accidents, lowering potential deaths by 25 per cent.
“Lane departure warning systems, electronic stability control and fatigue warning systems could also deliver safety benefits, with each of these technologies estimated to prevent around 4 to 6 per cent of Australian fatal heavy vehicle crashes, if fitted to all heavy vehicles,” he added.
Transport for NSW is a member of the Vehicle Safety Research Group (VSRG), which commissions Monash University to conduct studies into car accident prevention. According to Transport for NSW, the VSRG will maintain its research into crash avoidance innovation and aims to promote the use of such technology.
Adoption will continue to rise as these systems become more affordable, with the organisation already considering the advantages of making it mandatory to fit the technology to vehicles.