Automated vehicles have the potential to transform road safety.
But there are many unknowns associated with how drivers will interact with automated vehicles, especially at moments requiring manual resumption of vehicle control. The ultimate success of automated vehicles will depend on drivers’ trust in them and on how people choose to use and interact with them.
This aim of this research is to explore three issues critical to the successful deployment of automated vehicles:
- Factors influencing driver choice of automated vehicle control.
- Interactions between automated and manually controlled vehicles.
- Driver detection, recognition, and reaction to automated vehicle system failures.
The; University of New South Wales and the University of Sydney were awarded an Australian Research Council Linkage Project Grant as well as support from the Commission to undertake this project.
As the research is ongoing, a status update will be uploaded when available.
The Vehicle Safety Research Group is a consortium of 16 government road authorities and motoring clubs from Australia and New Zealand, with representation by the Commission.
The consortium oversees a major program of research undertaken by the Monash University Accident Research Centre focused on vehicle safety monitoring and evaluation.
A primary focus of the Vehicle Safety Research Group program has been developing consumer advice on vehicle safety that rated the relative safety performance of light vehicles (Used Car Safety Ratings). The ratings system developed covers both the role of the vehicle in determining injury outcomes in the event of a crash (secondary safety) and, more recently, the contribution of vehicle design and specification to crash risk (primary safety). Secondary safety assessment covers not only how the vehicle protects its own occupants from injury in a crash (crash worthiness), but also the injury risk posed to other road users with which the vehicle collides (aggressivity).
Analysis has also been extended to look at average ratings by year of vehicle manufacture. This analysis clearly showed the effects of the introduction of Australia Design Rules (ADRs) – mandatory safety equipment and performance standards – in improving occupant protection performance and provided a mechanism for assessing the impacts of vehicle safety policy changes more broadly.
The VSRG also has a dedicated focus on research across the following themes:
- Ratings and fleet analysis.
- Evaluation of new technology.
- Vulnerable road users.
- Fleet modelling.
- Policy development & advocacy.
A list of research publications can be accessed on their website.