An international perspective on road safety – PIARC

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The World Road Association (PIARC) Council Meeting

Cape Town, South Africa 21-22 September 2016

 Last week I represented Australia and New Zealand at the World Road Association (PIARC) Council meeting in Cape Town, South Africa as the Australian First Delegate.

This was the second World Road Congress I have attended, last year the event was held in Korea.

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The Council meets yearly to discuss the status of technical committees and to elect new members to various executive committees (known as Commissions) and review project activities.

The 2016 two-day meeting was held in Cape Town, South Africa to review the close out of the 2012- 2015 strategic cycle and to complete the transition to the new four-year strategic plan 2016- 2019.

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Australia is represented at the meeting by Austroads and as the Chairman, I am First Delegate. I was joined by Chief Executive of Austroads and Council member, Nick Koukoulas.

The main theme of the meeting focused on the use of technology and the role of research in the advancement of road safety.

There were 10 country presentations highlighting how research and technology are being used to help improve road safety.

I gave the Australian presentation and was able to demonstrate some of the work being undertaken by Austroads to develop a range of hazard perception videos to improve awareness of learner drivers and motorcyclists.

Austroads is developing 181 of the videos, and they created a great deal of interest by the participants.

There was a common theme of concern over the increase in the road toll in all 75 countries represented at the meeting, with pedestrians, cyclists and motor cyclists being over represented in road tolls internationally.

All presentations and papers are available on the WRA / PIRC website for viewing.

The next meeting will be held in Bonn, Germany in October 2017.

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