Australian Design Rule Development Program and Public Comment

The development of the ADRs continues as part of a program which includes amendments to existing ADRs, introduction of new ADRs, as well as a full review of existing ADRs where possible every ten years.

A number of changes to ADRs will be considered in the future including those detailed in the Safe Vehicles section of the National Road Safety Strategy 2011–20 and corresponding National Road Safety Action Plans.

Actions under the Strategy that have already been completed include antilock brake systems for motorcycles, protection of occupants in side impacts with narrow objects such as poles and trees, antilock or load proportioning brake systems for heavy vehicles, electronic stability control for light commercial vehicles, stability control systems for heavy vehicles and roll stability systems for heavy trailers.

Public comment on draft ADR amendments, draft new ADRs and draft reviews of existing ADRs is an important part of the process.

Consultation Regulation Impact Statement for Reducing Heavy Vehicle Rear Impact Crashes: Autonomous Emergency Braking

In line with one of the four ‘cornerstone’ areas (Safe Vehicles) of intervention in the National Road Safety Strategy 2011–20 and Priority Action 4 of the National Road Safety Action Plan 2018-2020, the Department has prepared a consultation Regulation Impact Statement (RIS) which considers a range of policy options to increase the fitment of Autonomous Emergency Braking Systems (AEBS) to new heavy vehicles and buses, in order to reduce heavy vehicle related rear impact road crash trauma.

Over the last three years (2016-2018), an average of 204 people were killed annually in 183 fatal crashes involving heavy trucks or buses. The most recent available data (2016-2017) shows that 1,832 people were hospitalised from road crashes involving heavy vehicles. Heavy vehicle crashes cost the Australian community around $1.5 billion a year in road trauma.

The consultation RIS identifies AEBS as an effective countermeasure to rear impact road trauma caused by heavy vehicles. Australian research has found that AEBS could alleviate or reduce the severity of almost 15 per cent of all Australian heavy vehicle crashes, predominantly those involving a heavy vehicle impacting the rear of another vehicle. Moreover, it was found that in such collisions, heavy vehicle AEB reduces all forms of trauma by up to 57 per cent.

Through this RIS process, the Australian Government is considering the case for mandating Autonomous Emergency Braking Systems (AEBS) for new heavy vehicles and buses, through the ADRs. The analysis indicates that increasing the fitment of these systems would lead to a substantial reduction in fatalities and serious injuries from crashes involving a heavy vehicle impacting the rear of another vehicle.

The ADRs are national standards under the Road Vehicle Standards Act 2018 and apply to all new vehicles.

A RIS is part of the Australian Government’s process to inform decision making, whenever regulation is considered as a policy option. This includes analysis of the relative benefits and costs of each option, to help establish the most effective approach.

Consultation Regulation Impact Statement DOCX: 2288 KB PDF: 2566 KB ReadSpeaker

The consultation RIS public comment period closed on 4 October 2019. The Department thanks those who have provided feedback.

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Last Updated: 4 October, 2019