The Australian Road Safety Conference (ARSC) is the largest road safety-dedicated conference in the Southern Hemisphere.

ARSC2021 went fully virtually this year due to Covid19 restrictions, after last year’s event was postponed. The theme for this year was Towards Zero: A Fresh Approach. ARSC2021 showcased the regions’ outstanding researchers, practitioners, policy-makers and industry spanning the plethora of road safety issues identified in the United Nations Decade of Action for Road Safety.

ARSC2021 featured five plenaries, six streams and seven symposiums, all virtually and interactive which aligned with the conference theme featuring many passionate road safety people all aiming to save lives on the roads.

NRSPP contributed significantly to this year’s virtual conference and its theme with two symposiums, a presentation, a plenary session and sponsor of “Best Paper with Implications for Improving Workplace Road Safety Award”:

  • The winner is Daniel Brain with Consignors of import containers play a critical role in preventing heavy vehicle rollover, but they’re often unaware of their role
  • Special Mention Rosin Sweeney for Development of a truck driver public health project: mental and physical safety (MaPS) on our roads

NRSPP was involved in:

    • Purpose: To share the learnings and findings of the recent pilot funded by the Victorian Department of Transport. Tristan (CEO of Empowr) presented the approach to supporting access to safe new vehicles fitted with technology and the findings of the pilot. Binyam (young driver), Naheed (L2P coordinator) and Anthony (CEO of Ganbina) told their stories about their time in the pilot, the benefits they experienced, and the impact it had on them and the community.  The presentation aimed to increase awareness of the social innovation of the program to Government Directors and Road Safety Specialists and engage in further conversations about how the program could support other parts of Australia.
    • The symposium included Jerome Carslake of NRSPP, Tristan King (Empowr), Binyam Tekeie (young pilot participant), Naheed Ahktar (L2P Coordinator at Laverton Integrated Community Services) and Anthony Kavanagh (CEO, Ganbina).
  • Presentation: Construction Logistics and Community Safety Australia (CLOCS-A): Progress Towards Safer Outcomes for Vulnerable Road Users
    • Purpose: Illustrate the progress over the past 12 months in building the business case and foundations for adapting Transport for London’s Construction Logistics and Community Safety Program to Australia.
  • Plenary 4: Translating research into practice: workplace road safety
    • The Session Chaired by Emeritus Professor Raphael Grzebieta
      • Associate Professor Sharon Newnam, Associate Director, Systems Safety Team, MUARC who developed the session and set the scene with Translating research into  practice is not rocket science…  it’s much harder than that!;
      • Jerome Carslake, NRSPP Director presentation: Translation of Research the NRSPP Way it’s All About Collaboration
      • Daniel Brain, Load Restraint Specialist, Toll Group presentation: Optimism bias in driver training; and
      • Paul Harrison, Principal Advisor Work Related Road Safety at Waka Kotahi, New Zealand Transport Agency presentation: Its rise and success, decline and learnings for the future
    • Some notable key points:
      • Workplace road safety should be viewed as a broad system, involves many key groups both within an organisation and outside. There is no silver bullet.
      • Collaboration is absolute key and it’s a consultative journey, working together and sharing.
        • This can help address optimism biases as well as not about telling people or companies helping them arrive at their own realisation and acceptance.
        • The importance of data and information sharing, particularly with regulators. Regulators hold a lot of data which can be used to develop safety interventions.
      • Industry needs simple interventions – NRSPP has done some great work on taking complex research findings and distilling them down into digestible and effective campaigns for industry to use. The toolbox project is a great example of this.
      • Light vehicle fleet used for work – you cant regulate something you cant quantify. Need to understand more about the light vehicle fleet used as workplace and possibly apply some of the learnings of the heavy vehicle sector with regards to regulation and safety
      • Practice based evidence is crucial for industry as they need to see and breath it. It has to be translated to them to matter.
      • Requires regular and continuous engagement as the journey never end.

NRSPP looks forward to supporting ARSC2022 which will be held in Christ Church New Zealand.

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