We won't ban bull bars: King

Federal Government rejects reports it wants to ban bull bars, saying it is looking at proposal to improve safety

February 8, 2011

The Federal Government has rejected reports it is intending to ban bull bars, saying it is instead looking at a proposal to improve them.

Parliamentary Secretary for Infrastructure and Transport Catherine King refuted media reports and comments from interest groups that a ban was on the cards following the release of a document from the Department of Infrastructure and Transport.

The regulation impact statement proposes the adoption of an internationally agreed standard to improve pedestrian safety by making the front of vehicles more energy absorbing.

"Let’s be clear about this, the Government will not ban bull bars," King says.

"The Government recognises that bull bars play a positive role in road safety, including in animal strikes."

According to the Department of Infrastructure and Transport, its proposal will save up to 65 lives and 3,000 serious injuries over 15 years.

It recommends phasing the proposal in from 2013 to 2019 and applying it to new vehicles. It will not be retrospective.

Because some bull bars could stiffen the front of vehicles and significantly undercut the gains from applying the pedestrian safety standards, the department’s proposal also includes proposed standards for bull bars.

This includes imposing European-like standards for vehicles not designed for off-road use, such as passenger cars.

For off-road vehicles, the department proposes an Australian standard designed developed with industry involvement which will allow for metal bull bars.

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