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 $10 million boost for safety innovation

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Under Round 2 of the Australian government’s Road Safety Innovation Fund, 40 projects aimed at reducing road fatalities will share in $10 million over the next three years.

“The Road Safety Innovation Fund targets projects designed to reduce fatal and serious road crashes,” said Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Infrastructure, Transport and Regional Development Barnaby Joyce.

“This program prioritises initiatives that seek to improve road safety for everyone travelling on Australian roads.

“Funding innovation to test and implement new methods, infrastructure upgrades, products and road-safety management are part of the Safe System principles – an inclusive approach to road safety shared by all governments through the National Road Safety Strategy.”

Assistant Minister for Road Safety and Freight Transport Scott Buchholz said there had been a lot of interest in the program, with 114 applications received for Round 2.

“Strong and diverse interest in Round 1 led the Australian Government to opening up the program in Round 2 to a wider range of innovative road safety initiatives, including seed funding and research projects,” said Buchholz.

Chief executive officer of the Australasian College of Road Safety Dr Ingrid Johnston added, “As the Inquiry Report into the 2011-2020 National Road Safety Strategy identified, Australia must be innovative to deliver programs at a scale that matters to achieve road safety results.

“The Road Safety Innovation Fund provides an excellent opportunity for researchers, businesses and other organisations to test and implement their ideas and make our roads safer.”

Projects funded through the Road Safety Innovation Fund Round 2 include:

  • Testing new ways to detect risks for vulnerable road users such as vision-impaired pedestrians, cyclists and young children .
  • Looking at barriers to the uptake of new technologies that support motorcyclist safety
  • new crash barrier types, lighting, intersection design and crash-prediction tools, with the goal of improving infrastructure upgrades.
  • New crash-investigation tools and innovation in loading restraints to improve road safety for heavy vehicles.
  • Innovation and technology to reduce risk-taking behaviours, including helping drivers understand how tired is too tired and when they are too impaired to safely drive.
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