Delegates representing Government bodies in Australian Road Transport have flown into Abu Dhabi for the 26th World Roads Congress.
The event, held every four years, offered the group which included Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Infrastructure, Transport and Regional Development Michael McCormack an opportunity to share knowledge on best practice in road safety, transport investment, systems management and the use of technologies to develop future transport networks with over 120 other countries.
McCormack said the delegates were able to learn from other nations in how to address challenges in Australia and to share, learn and listen to world leaders in regard to new innovations in transport networks, emerging technologies and initiatives to reduce incidents of road trauma.
“The safety challenge is fundamental to our future transport network, particularly with the distances many people must drive in Australia, especially for those who live in regional, rural and remote areas," he said.
“We are already seeing the benefits of safety focussed road upgrades with two of our biggest projects – The Pacific Highway in New South Wales and the Bruce Highway in Queensland – returning significant reductions in road fatalities along completed sections. But there is more to do, especially in reducing road trauma in regional Australia and for vulnerable road users, such as pedestrians,” said McCormack.
According to McCormack automated vehicles are potentially a game-changer in safety and also for those who have limited mobility or are unable to drive.
If successfully integrated with public transport he said such vehicles could connect more people to jobs and services that are currently considered out of reach because of lack of services and commutes that are unreasonable.
“I’m looking forward to engaging with industry leaders in this space over the next three days to understand how technology and innovations can continue to build our national transport network and improve safety on our roads,” said McCormack.
The host of the World Roads Congress is rotated among member countries every four years and brings together international communities to share discoveries, innovations, strategies, trends and best practices in the fields of road, infrastructures and transport.