Safe System Engineering

The Safe System is a road safety philosophy that is based on the principles that road users are fallible and will make mistakes but that no one should be killed or seriously injured when a crash occurs. 

To prevent this, the road system must be forgiving so that the forces of collisions do not exceed the limits that a human body can tolerate.

In this section you’ll find guidelines and information on how VicRoads applies Safe System principles to the planning, design and operation of the road network.

Safe System Assessment is a tool that has been developed to provide a measure of the extent to which a road infrastructure project aligns with Safe System principles and the ultimate objective of eliminating fatal and serious injuries from crashes on the road network. VicRoads has developed guidelines which specify when a Safe System Assessment should be conducted and to provide guidance on the assessment process.

The Safe System Assessment Guidelines should be used in conjunction with Austroads Safe System Assessment Framework

Safe System Assessment Guidelines V1.1 April 2019 [PDF 1.3Mb]

Rapid Safe System Assessment Report Template (DOCX 823Kb]

Full Safe System Assessment Report Template (DOCX 969Kb]


Following the release of its Safe System Assessment (SSA) Guidelines in mid-2018, VicRoads has been working with industry to develop a register of recommended officers considered proficient at facilitating SSAs, reporting on findings in regard to a project’s Safe System alignment and recommending treatments to move further ‘Towards Zero’. 

This register has evolved from a series of peer reviews carried out by VicRoads in early 2018, with the intent of ensuring SSAs are delivered to a high standard and appropriate content is being provided in accordance with SSA Guidelines. To maintain this high standard moving forward, VicRoads will carry out sporadic reviews of SSAs carried out by officers listed on the register.

Growing the List 

The following flowchart maps the process for anyone looking to be added to the Register.

Attachment 1  SSA Register Workflow Image


For further information please refer to our FAQs [PDF 296Kb] or feel free to contact the VicRoads Safe System Engineering Team on (03) 9854 2338 or [email protected].

See the list of VicRoads Recommended Safe System Assessors [PDF 100 Kb]

Register of Safe System Assessors FAQs [PDF 296Kb]

Austroads has a range of technical documents that provide guidance and information relating to the Safe System and its application. These documents, which are available on Austroads website include:

  • Research Report AP-R509-16, Safe System Assessment Framework
  • Research Report AP-R560-18, Towards Safe System Infrastructure: A Compendium of Current Knowledge
  • Research Report AP-R556-17, Understanding and Improving Safe System Intersection Performance
  • Research Report AP-R514-16, Achieving Safe System Speeds on Urban Arterial Roads: Compendium of Good Practice
  • Research Report AP-R488-15, Safe System in the Planning Process
  • Technical Report AP-T330-17, Safe System Infrastructure on Mixed Use Arterials
  • Research Report AP-R498-15, Improving the Performance of Safe System Infrastructure: Final Report

Contact us

We encourage and welcome your feedback about our technical documents. Your input helps us to continually improve our publications.  

If you have any suggestions that you would like to share please contact VicRoads Safe System Engineering team.

Email:  [email protected]

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