A future where every journey is a safe one

Vehicle Purchase Policy

Start Navigation [Current Level] End Navigation [Current Level]

The information contained in this booklet is also available on the TAC Bulletin boards (occupational Health & Safety) and via links within the Car Pool Booking program. This is an internal policy. Should you have any queries please contact the TAC's Road Safety branch.

SAFE VEHICLE PURCHASE

The TAC is committed to providing a safe workplace for all employees and that extends to the TAC’s pool and company-leased vehicles. This commitment demonstrates the level of care the organisation has for the safety of its employees on the road and the safety of other road users.

Safe Vehicles is a key pillar of Towards Zero – a strategy for achieving zero deaths and serious injuries on our roads. To reach this goal we need to create a safe transport system, which involves safe roads and roadsides, safe speeds, safe vehicles and safe road use by all people using the road.

Safe vehicles have the potential to save lives by absorbing and reducing the forces of impact in a crash or preventing the crash from ever occurring.

The Towards Zero 2016-2020 strategy and action plan outlines a requirement that all Government fleet vehicles will have the best safety features available from 2018. Implementing this policy will ensure this commitment is met.

This policy will apply to all cars leased by the TAC including pool and company leased (management) vehicles.

The requirements for the TAC cars (purchased/leased or rented) are:

Mandatory

Crash Protection Features

  • 5 star Australasian New Car Assessment Program (ANCAP) safety rating
  • High ANCAP pedestrian protection score
  • Front and Side Curtain Airbags
  • Seatbelt reminder system for all seating positions
  • Adjustable head rests for all seating positions
  • Station wagons and hatchbacks fitted with cargo barriers
  • 3-point seatbelts in all seating positions
  • Anti-whiplash systems such as active head rests
  • Curb weight 1300-1700kg

Crash Avoidance Features

  • Auto Emergency Braking (AEB)*
  • Lane Departure Warning (LDW) and/or Lane Keep Assist (LKA)
  • Daytime Running Lights
  • Blind Spot Warning (BSW)
  • Electronic Stability Control
  • Reversing Camera
  • Clear glazing – no added window tinting.
  • Highly visible car colour (preferably white)

Recommended

  • Fatigue alert/monitoring
  • Intelligent Speed Assist

*At a minimum a Forward Collision Warning should be included but preferably low speed and/or higher speed auto emergency braking should be purchased.

KEY SAFETY FEATURES

AUTO EMERGENCY BRAKING

AEB is a feature that alerts a driver to an imminent crash and helps them use the maximum braking capacity of the car. AEB will independently brake if the situation becomes critical and no human response is made. AEB comes in three categories:

  • Low speed system – works on city streets to detect other vehicles in front
  • Higher speed system – scans up to 200 metres ahead using long range radar at higher speeds
  • Pedestrian system – detects pedestrian movement

Analysis of crash data shows that cars fitted with AEB are 38% less likely to collide with the car in front of them. A further study found AEB reduced rear end crash severity by 53% and completely avoid rear end crashes by 35%.

Different names for AEB:

  • Ford: Active City Stop
  • Honda: Collision Mitigation Braking System
  • Holden: Automatic Emergency Braking City Stop
  • Subaru: Pre-Collision Braking System

LANE DEPARTURE WARNING /LANE KEEP ASSIST

Lane Departure Warning warns the driver that their car is getting too close to the lane marking. The warning is delivered through an audible or tactile signal. The intention is simply to make the driver aware that the car is in danger of crossing the line.
Lane Keep Assist addresses similar crash situations to the Lane Departure Warning. While warning systems rely on the driver to take corrective action, Lane Keep Assist proactively steers the car back into the lane. The system detects the car getting close to the lane marking and gently steers the car back into the centre of the lane.

CURTAIN AIRBAGS

Curtain airbags are designed to protect the occupants’ heads in a crash.
The airbags deploy around the side windows forming a cushion between occupants and the windows.
Research has shown that head protecting airbags can reduce driver and passenger deaths in side impact crashes by around 40%.
Curtain airbags should be a priority when purchasing a vehicle.  Side impact crashes account for 22% of all the major crash types where people are killed or seriously injured.

DAYTIME RUNNING LIGHTS

Daytime Running Lights (DRLs) are weak headlights that are illuminated during the day in order to make vehicles more visible and thus reduce their involvement in crashes.
Investigations into daytime accidents found that up to 50% of drivers reported the cause as failing to see the other vehicle.  For accidents at intersections this figure increased to 80%.
The effect of DRLs on reducing accidents and injuries is dependent upon the quality of natural light at different latitudes. Based on latitude, Koornsta (1998) predicts DRLs could reduce multiple vehicle daytime fatalities by around 16% in Victoria.

A study comparing crash rates before and immediately after DRLs became standard on tested models found a reduction in the occurrence of vehicle-vehicle crashes by around 5% and a reduction in vehicle-pedestrian collisions of approximately 9% (Bergkvist, 2001).

BLIND SPOT WARNING

Blind Spot Warning is a technology that detects and warns a driver that a vehicle has entered their ‘blind spot’. Typically this occurs when a vehicle is behind and to one side of the vehicle it is overtaking. The warnings can be visual, audible and/or tactile to alert the driver that it is unsafe to change lanes.

INTELLIGENT SPEED ASSIST

Intelligent Speed Assist (ISA) is a safety technology that alerts drivers when they exceed the speed limit. Audio and visual warnings remind the driver that they are going too fast.

ISA can also be fitted with a speed limiting function which increases the pressure on the accelerator when you exceed the posted speed limit, making it harder to accelerate. It can also be used as an active speed limiter by physically preventing the driver from exceeding the posted speed limit.

If all cars in Australia were fitted with ISA:

  • Serious injury crashes could be reduced by up to 13%
  • Fatal crashes could be reduced by up to 24%

If an active speed limiting ISA was fitted to all cars in Australia:

  • Serious injury crashes could be reduced by up to 36%
  • Fatal crashes could be reduced by up to 59%

In addition, ISA can contribute to significant reductions in fuel consumption and car emissions without significant increases in travel times.

REFERENCES

Insurance Institute for Highway Safety. (2006). Side airbags are reducing driver deaths in both cars and SUVs. Status Report, Vol. 41, No. 8.

Koornstra, M. (1998). The safety effects of daytime running Lights. SWOV Research Activities, 9,1-3.

Bergkvist, P. (2001). Daytime running lights (DRLs) – A North American success story. In the proceedings of the 17th International Technical Conference on the Enhanced Safety of Vehicles. Amsterdam, June 4th–7th.