In May 2009 James O'Loughlin of the ABC's New Inventors program featured in our car safety campaign with the aim of educating people on the importance of two road safety technologies - Electronic Stability Control (ESC) and curtain airbags.
The campaign highlighted these critical safety features were available in new and used cars throughout Australia and that it was important all car buyers demanded them.
When buying a car, whether new or used, it is important to aim for a minimum 4 star rating and look for ESC and curtain airbags as these features could save your life.
Visit howsafeisyourcar.com.au - a valuable website that lists the safety rating of new and used cars on the market as well as other helpful vehicle safety information and research.
Road trauma would be significantly reduced if we drove in the safest car. The Monash University Accident Research Centre (MUARC) estimates that if every Australian motorist moved into the safest car in the same class, road trauma could be reduced by almost a third. Car safety features are often not included in Australian vehicles by manufacturers and car importers to reduce vehicle costs. These safety features not included are:
- side curtain airbags – these give protection during side-impact crashes
- electronic stability control (ESC) programs which help drivers maintain control and
- whiplash protection systems
If all vehicles were fitted with ESC, single vehicle injury crashes could be reduced by approximately 30%, saving about 50 lives in Victoria each year. (MUARCentre, 2007)
curtain/side airbags alone can reduce the risk of driver death in side impact road crashes by nearly 40%. (Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, October 2006 – US)
TAC Car Safety Strategy
Our car safety strategy aims to:
- make safety the top priority when people buy a new or used car
- improve the level of safety in all cars sold in Victoria and
- encourage people to look for star ratings and key safety features.
From 2012 all new cars have been required to be fitted with head protecting technology like side curtain airbags. See the Road Safety Victoria strategy for more information.
For a list of cars with both ESC and curtain airbags see the How Safe is Your Car website. Here you will find the safety ratings and features of small cars, medium cars, large cars, luxury cars, sports cars, passenger vans and 4 Wheel drive cars.
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