Mandatory vehicle technology to make light vehicles safer

New measures have been proposed by the Australian government to make light vehicles that extra bit safer.

Catherine King, road safety minister, announced on Friday that the government is intending to make Electronic Stability Control (ESC) and Emergency Brake Assist (EBA) systems compulsory in all light vehicles made or imported into the country.

"Mandating vehicle technology that helps drivers to avoid collisions is an effective way to make our roads safer for all users and will further bolster the Government’s efforts under the National Road Safety Strategy, aimed at reducing deaths and injuries on Australia’s roads," Ms King said in an April 26 statement.

This is excellent news for every fleet manager who's concerned about the safety of employees travelling in company cars.

Electronic Stability Control is a vehicle technology that improves - as the name suggests - a car's stability. It is able to detect when a vehicle is experiencing loss of traction, and instructs individual wheels to break in order to prevent skidding.

Emergency Brake Assist is an advanced type of braking technology that is able to detect when a driver is attempting to make an emergency stop and amp up the braking pressure accordingly.

This means brake performance is maximised and the car is able to come to a halt much faster than usual.

These technologies are all about minimising loss of vehicle control, which is a major problem on Australia's roads - and not just for drivers.

Ms King revealed that each and every year more than 200 pedestrians and cyclists are killed on Australian roads, and even more are seriously injured because of road accidents.

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety in the United States confirms that the implementation of Electronic Stability Control in passenger cars has the potential to prevent nearly one third of all fatal crashes, and reduce the risk of vehicle roll-over by as much as 80 per cent.