Road safety advocate awarded at ACRS2017


Thursday, 19 October, 2017

Road safety advocate awarded at ACRS2017

The ACRS Fellowship has been awarded to leading safety advocate, Samantha Cockfield.

Cockfield, the manager of road safety technical and policy at the Transport Accident Commission, has demonstrated a profound commitment to the reduction of road trauma.

The award was presented by Darren Chester, Federal Minister for Infrastructure and Transport, and ACRS President Lauchlan McIntosh, during the 2017 Australasian Road Safety Conference (ARSC2017).

“Improving road safety is a responsibility of all Australians, but it is advocates like Samantha who bring the community along with them in the road safety journey through their passion, leadership and technical nous,” Chester said.

“For the best part of 25 years Samantha has worked on some of the most important road safety initiatives undertaken in this country, but equally, she has mentored many of the nation’s leading road safety experts.”

Cockfield has been involved in the road safety field since 1992, beginning her career as an economist working on the development and evaluation of accident blackspot programs. Over the past 24 years, she has led the development and delivery of numerous key initiatives that have contributed to reduced road trauma in Victoria. Some of her key achievements include:

  • leading the public education campaign, communications and road safety initiatives to educate parents and the community of the importance of 120 hours’ practice on the road for learner drivers. The education program acted as a key enabler, allowing for the eventual regulation of 120 hours of mandatory practice for learner drivers and improving the safety outcome for novice drivers;
  • leading the public education campaign and communications to increase consumer awareness and demand of electronic stability control, with an eventual mandate of the technology in Victoria and increasing the safety of the Victorian fleet;
  • evolving the previous Accident Blackspot Program to the current Safe System Road Infrastructure Program (SSRIP). SSRIP is a 10-year $1 billion investment to transform the Victorian road network in accordance with Towards Zero principles to increase the safety of road infrastructure in Victoria. SSRIP is one of the largest programs of its kind in the world;
  • securing support and assisting with the development of the Enhanced Crash Investigation Study (ECIS), an $8 million research program designed to examine more than 400 serious injury crashes in detail to provide an understanding of how crashes and injuries occur.

With Victoria moving to implement the Towards Zero approach and build a safe road system for Victoria, Cockfield has shown excellence in leadership to assist Victoria to achieve the goal of zero deaths and serious injuries through:

  • the delivery of an annual Towards Zero Road Safety Leadership Symposium to garner the support of leaders in government, local government and the public sector to brainstorm and implement actions that can help reduce road trauma in Victoria;
  • commissioning and leading the development of a Safe System Road Map to help guide the investment and implementation required to build a safe road system in Victoria;
  • leading the development of a Safety Culture in Victoria through the development of a new communications strategy designed to foster safety as the key priority and to bring the Victorian community on the Towards Zero journey.

The ACRS Award Ceremony took place at Perth Crown Resort. The ceremony took place in front of 600 of Australasia’s foremost road safety professionals and advocates.

Image credit: ©stock.adobe.com/au/gunnar3000

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