VicRoads will install radar-based reverse braking technology to its road maintenance fleet.
This automated system is the first of its kind to be trialled in Australia and after a six month successful trial, VicRoads is the first heavy fleet operator to install this new technology.
Data from Safe Work Australia shows that 18 workers died in the workplace by incidents involving reversing trucks between 2003 and 2012. Six workers died while undertaking loading activities, 5 were killed doing traffic control activities and 3 were moving around the construction area when they were hit by a truck.
“Safety in the workplace is of the most importance and this technology will significantly improve safe working conditions for VicRoads employees. The safety of our people and members of the public is paramount and the autonomous braking system will make a difference,” said VicRoads Chief Executive, John Merritt.
It works by automatically applying airbrakes once the system detects an object at the rear of the truck as it reverses.
Autonomous emergency braking system are standard on new cars in the United States, Europe, and Japan.
“The technology works alongside other safety systems already in operation and complements our suite of workplace procedures. We believe this technology will significantly reduce worksite risks and we hope it will become standard across the industry. Our dedication to workplace safety never ends and VicRoads will continue to consider any new technology which may save lives,” Mr Merritt said.
VicRoads will share the trial data with transport groups and fleet managers and are hoping that the technology will also be used within the construction industry.