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Welcome to the May 2015 issue of AustroadsNews

This edition has a link to the latest Board meeting Communique, a run-down on our latest publications, and links to upcoming seminars and conferences.

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New Austroads Phone and Fax numbers

Austroads National Office has new phone and fax numbers.
Tel +61 2 8265 3300 | Fax +61 2 8265 3399

Please update your records.


Austroads Board Meeting Communique

The Austroads Board met on 25 and 26 March 2015 in Canberra for a strategic planning workshop and regular Board meeting.

While it is recognised that Austroads is well respected and provides good value, the workshop identified a need to re-invigorate and re-shape the organisation to ensure it continued to meet the needs of member organisations and other stakeholders. The Executive Committee will develop a first draft of the strategic plan for presentation at the June Austroads Board meeting.

The Communique provides an update on the priority work streams identified by the Board in June last year, the work of the Austroads Programs, the Cooperative ITS project and international activities.  


Incorporating Heavy Vehicles into Sprayed Seal Design

Traffic loadings on Australia’s extensive sprayed seal network have increased, particularly with freight efficiency resulting in longer and heavier loads being transported by prime movers.

Austroads has released a report that details the development of a model to describe how different axle loads and axle groupings combine to cause surface texture decay on a sprayed seal.

Development of the model relied on experimental data generated by the Australian linear accelerated loading facility. The model was then validated using another set of data generated by the New Zealand Canterbury Accelerated Pavement Testing Indoor Facility.

From the data, a load damage exponent of 1 for sprayed seal wear was calculated based on analysis of a dual tyre tandem axle traversing a sprayed seal. This suggests that the load damage to a sprayed seal is linear as opposed to the power function model currently used in pavement design.

The research findings can be used to investigate if the Austroads seal design method needs refinement in terms of equivalent heavy vehicles calculation.


Introduction to Traffic Management

The Guide to Traffic Management has 13 parts and provides comprehensive coverage of traffic management guidance for practitioners involved in traffic engineering, road design and road safety.

Part 1: Introduction to Traffic Management provides an introduction to the discipline of traffic management and an overview of the structure and content of the Guide. It outlines the breadth of the subject, the distribution of content among the various Parts of the Guide, and the relationship with other Guides such as those for Road DesignRoad Safety and Road Transport Planning.

Part 1 introduces traffic management in a practical context, and presents fundamental definitions, principles and objectives. It introduces functional road hierarchy as an essential concept, and outlines the basic elements of traffic management and their application. 

This third edition includes updated descriptions of each Part, additional information on the functional road hierarchy and a new section on road environment safety. It also includes updated referencing to relevant legislations, standards and guidelines.

Austroads has made the PDF version of Part 1 available for no charge. 


Road Design for Heavy Vehicles

Austroads has released the results of a four year project designed to:

  • update the design criteria for intersections to allow appropriate opportunities for heavy vehicle entry and to investigate gap acceptance behaviour of heavy vehicle drivers
  • identify improvements in the current road design standards that will more safely accommodate heavy vehicle movements.

The project included:

  • obtaining field data on the gaps accepted by heavy vehicle drivers at different types of intersections
  • a literature review to identify road design standards and practices that accommodate heavy vehicles and road design elements that may contribute to increased risk of crash occurrence or crash severity
  • analysing heavy vehicle crashes across Australia and New Zealand
  • identifying sections within the Austroads Guide to Road Design that have implications for heavy vehicle operation and
  • consulting with jurisdictional and heavy vehicle industry stakeholders to identify key safety issues and possible solutions.

The next key step will require the Austroads Road Design Task Force to critically review the suggested amendments to the Guide to Road Design.


Probabilistic Road Deterioration Modelling Showing Promise

The accurate prediction of pavement performance is a key to the efficient management of road infrastructure. By reducing errors in predictions of road deterioration, agencies can obtain significant savings through timely intervention and accurate planning.

The deterministic approaches to predicting road deterioration (RD) currently widely used by asset managers can result in underfunding for road maintenance budgets or failure to meet level of service goals. Work funded by Austroads shows that probabilistic approaches can provide a way to resolve these issues.

Probabilistic models attempt to tackle the stochastic characteristics of the pavement deterioration process by trying to estimate the likelihood of variations in single deterministic values, such as roughness.

The latest report by Austroads follows work undertaken in 2011 and 2012. The project initially assessed the available probabilistic methods and their suitability for modelling RD and then used deterministic RD network-level models in a probabilistic approach to estimate the possible range of the dependent output variables of these models. 

The latest work demonstrates the impact that variations in predictions of roughness, the main dependent variable, has on road agency costs (RAC) and vehicle operating costs (VOC) in a pavement life-cycle costing analysis. The study indicates that the RAC estimates are highly sensitive to the percentile roughness estimates compared to the VOC estimates. 


Stage 1 NGTSM Content Released

The National Guidelines for Transport System Management (NGTSM) outline best practice for transport planning and assessment in Australia.

The Guidelines, last published in 2006, are being revised in a two-stage process.

The Transport and Infrastructure Senior Officials’ Committee (TISOC) approved the Stage 1 NGTSM content on 27 March. The revised guidelines are available on the NGSTM 2015 website.

The Stage 2 work to update the Guidelines is now underway. The draft Stage 2 content will be released for public comment in late 2015.


Upcoming Workshops + Conferences

NEW Accessibility-based Network Operations Planning
27 May, Online Webinar, no charge but registration essential

IPWEA International Public Works Conference
7-11 June 2015, Rotorua, New Zealand

Bikeable City Masterclass (in association with the Australian Walking and Cycling Conference)
26-30 June 2015, Copenhagen

Australian Walking and Cycling Conference 
20-21 July 2015, Adelaide, South Australia

NEW AITPM National Traffic and Transport Conference
28-31 July 2015, Brisbane, Queensland

NEW Australian and New Zealand Society of Occupational Medicine Annual Scientific Meeting
23-26 August, Brisbane, Queensland

Asia-Pacific Cycle Congress 2015 
13-16 September 2015, Brisbane, Queensland

AAPA International Flexible Pavements Conference
13-16 September 2015, Gold Coast, Queensland

Australasian Road Safety Conference 
14-16 October 2015, Gold Coast, Queensland

XXVth World Road Congress
2-6 November 2015, Seoul, Korea

4th International Conference on Driver Distraction and Inattention
9-11 November 2015, Sydney, Australia

Sixth International Conference on Traffic and Transport Psychology 2-5 August 2016, Brisbane, Queensland

23rd ITS World Congress Melbourne 2016
10-14 October 2016, Melbourne Victoria