The Australian Government has begun consulting on the future of vehicle safety technology – Autonomous Emergency Braking (AEB) systems for new cars. Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Infrastructure, Transport and Regional Development Michael McCormack said Australia was playing a lead role in the international development of a United Nations regulation for AEB systems, which for the first time includes pedestrian protection measures.

“The Australian Government is committed to improving road safety through strong investment and national leadership on our way to preventing deaths and serious injuries occurring on our roads,” the Deputy Prime Minister said. Vehicle technology has an important role to play, which is why we are opening consultation on the introduction of a new standard for AEB. This process will allow industry and the community to express their views on the use of AEB across the new light vehicle fleet.

Assistant Minister for Road Safety and Freight Transport Scott Buchholz said increasing deployment of effective AEB systems in light and heavy vehicles was a priority action of the National Road Safety Action Plan, recognising the significant safety benefits technology can bring to road users. “AEB systems detect likely forward collisions, provide the driver with a warning and if the driver does not respond, applies the brakes automatically,” Assistant Minister Buchholz said.

“The measure is expected to save 586 lives and avoid 20,600 serious injuries.” Assistant Minister to the Deputy Prime Minister Kevin Hogan said this would build on the Government’s significant progress achieved to improve road safety by increasing the fitment of AEB across the heavy vehicle fleet. “Increasing the uptake of AEB across the heavy vehicle fleet is expected to save 78 lives and prevent 2,152 serious injuries,” Assistant Minister Hogan said.