New opportunities to save lives on country roads through innovation and technology have arrived, with applications for a $12 million Road Safety Innovation Fund now open.

Deputy Prime Minister and Federal Nationals Leader Michael McCormack said any organisation with an interest in road safety research and development should apply for funding to help make a difference to the lives of all Australians.

“Road crashes have an enormous emotional and economic impact on all affected communities, but particularly the families and friends of the victims,” Mr McCormack said.

“Improving road safety is something our entire community can contribute to and I encourage all organisations with an interest in road safety innovation and technologies to apply for funding.

“Innovation and technology are key tools that can help reduce the number of road crashes by ensuring road safety becomes ‘business as usual’ for all road users in the regions.”

Mr McCormack said the program would provide grants for road safety research and technology development to improve safety outcomes for road users across the nation.

“The Government takes road safety seriously, because one death or one crash on our roads is one too many,” Mr McCormack said.

“The fund will target innovative projects addressing priority areas including improving road safety in regional and remote areas, reducing driver distraction and drug driving and supporting better safety outcomes for vulnerable road users.

“I look forward to announcing successful projects to be funded under Round 1 of the Road Safety Innovation Fund in the coming months and seeing critical safety-improving projects get underway soon after.”

The first round of the Road Safety Innovation Fund has $2 million available to fund projects across the country to run over the next four years.

Potential projects can include innovation in road safety management initiatives, new technologies and delivery techniques or research that better informs policy development and outcomes.

This fund is just one of the many ways the Nationals in Government are investing in road safety to move towards zero fatalities and serious injuries on our roads.

The first round of applications close 18 May 2020 and will be assessed through an open competitive process.

For further information, including application guidelines and submissions, for the $12 million Road Safety Innovation Fund are available at www.grants.gov.au.

Runs on the board

The Nationals in Government’s commitment to road safety includes funding for the following initiatives:
• Established a new Office of Road Safety, which will support the Australian Government’s road safety agenda;
• $2.2 billion Local and State Government Road Safety Package which includes:
• An additional $1.1 billion for the Roads to Recovery Program
• An additional $550 million for the Black Spot Program
• An additional $275 million for the Heavy Vehicle Safety and Productivity program
• An additional $275 million for the Bridges to Renewal Program
• Fatality Free Friday – $220,000 over four years;
• $1.8 million provided to develop the Digital Road Safety Passport over two years,
• the $4 million Road Safety Awareness and Enablers Fund over four years,
• the $12 million Road Safety Innovation Fund over four years,
• $6.6 million funding of ANCAP over four years,
• $8 million provided to upgrade Driver Reviver sites over two years,
• $8 million to extend the Keys2Drive program to 30 June 2023, and
• $22 million over four years to the National Heavy Vehicle Regulator (NHVR) to continue the Heavy Vehicle Safety Initiatives (HVSI) program which funds practical initiatives to improve the safety of the heavy vehicle industry.