The first fatal road crash for the Victorian Christmas break involved a car and wire rope barrier.
The WRB did not stop the car, a Proton, not a huge vehicle.
This is the very type of vehicle that WRB is supposed to slow to a less damaging stop. You'd reckon WRB would be tested to set tolerances. It should work at say 20% above the mandated speed limit for say, that type of car. I'd like to see the data on that .... but it's not available.
Police say the car was travelling well over the speed limit. What is well over? 120 in a 100 kph zone? 150 KPH? It was a wet night. Getting their numbers even close accurate in that time, in those conditions, has got to be a job for a highly-trained expert. Was there one there that night? They say there were drugs in the car.
Police have more or less blamed the druggy for this crash and excused the WRB by not even mentioning it. All this was presented to the public via the news media before much measuring, blood testing or highway camera checking could have been done. The Coroner may as well just rubber stamp this one.
The question the Coroner should be asking in court is, would this driver be dead if the WRB had performed as VicRoads and the manufacturers claim it does? Would a smooth concrete barrier have stopped this Proton from slamming in to the pole? As far as I know the only crash testing of WRB in OZ was done by Monash Uni at Laverton using Toyota Echos but MUARC has never released all the data from those tests and you can't get it under FoI because it's deemed not to be owned by VicRoads. So, while the taxpayer paid the boffins for the research we can't have the data ..... I'm told.
In most Victorian Parliamentary inquiries into road safety in the last 20 years the road safety committees have complained that crash site data is inadequate in this state. The 2012 Inquiry into motorcycle and scooter safety recommended the government establish an independent authority to collect and assess crash site data. Police/VicRoads/TAC have a lot of our money invested so they won't let an independent authority happen and Victoria hasn't had a politician strong enough to manage our road authorities for 20 years.
Crashes will continue. Crash data will not improve. Police will go on spinning to camera. And our elected representatives will continue to accept what the public servants tell them, no matter how outrageous.
The IRG still has had no result from the NSW and Victorian authorities for the research data list we asked for after the Holbrook WRB truck crash on November 6. See earlier posts.