There are so many safety technology features emerging which help reduce the risk of the Safer Vehicle and Safer Driver on the road. This report provides a summary of what is available, where the best information can be found and will be a live document which will update and change as new features / technology emerges.

This document is an output from the NRSPP Vehicle Technology Working Group as they identified confusion over what is out there and how the same technology can be called many different things.

DID YOU KNOW: It is estimated that occupants have twice the chance of being killed or seriously injured in an ANCAP 1-star rated vehicle compared to an ANCAP 5-star rated vehicle. Therefore, if everyone bought the safest car in its class, including older cars, overall safety across Australia would improve by 25%. So do your part and try to buy a 5-star safety rated vehicle (Office of Road Safety, Western Australia).
Fleet Managers Commercial vehicles account for over 50% of new vehicles sold. As a result, “every new vehicle purchased without the best safety rating and features is an opportunity lost, as that vehicle will be operating at an increased risk to its occupants for its life on the road, which can be up to 20 years ” (Truong & Cockfield, 2013). As a result, fleet managers play an important role in increasing their fleet’s safety in Australia. This is because their cars will eventually become second hand cars, which other users, especially young drivers will buy. It is in the interest of your company (not just the fleet managers) to ensure that your fleet has the best safety features installed to maintain safety for all road users.

Vehicle Safety Features

There are three different categories of safety features – crash avoidance features designed to prevent a crash (sometimes known as primary or active safety), crash protection features designed to protect occupants in the event of a crash (sometimes known as secondary or passive safety) and post-accident features that are used for obtaining emergency assistance.

All new vehicles on the Australian market are required to comply with the Australian Design Rules, which specify minimum performance requirements for safety. However, the level of protection offered by vehicles can and does vary.

The Australasian New Car Assessment Program (ANCAP) provides consumers with transparent advice on vehicle safety through its safety rating program. ANCAP awards a star rating from 1 to 5, the more stars the better the safety rating.  The ANCAP website contains star ratings for all of the vehicles assessed, as well as information on the testing and rating system.

The Used Car Safety Ratings (UCSR) provides consumers with information on the safety of used vehicles.  The UCSR are based on statistics collected from car crashes in Australia and New Zealand between 1996 and 2011, where someone was killed or seriously injured. The UCSR use a star rating from 1 to 5, the more stars the better the safety rating. The howsafeisyourcar website, published by the Victorian Transport Accident Commission contains information on the Used Car Safety Ratings.