Transport of children and youth with additional needs (TOCAN) snags prestigious ACRS-3M road safety award

10 August 2012

A Victorian project, Transport of Children and Youth with Additional Needs (TOCAN), has won the prestigious 3M-ACRS Diamond Road Safety Awards at this year’s Australasian College of Road Safety (ACRS) national conference.

The TOCAN Team won the accolade last night at the ACRS national conference dinner, held at Darling Harbour, Sydney, andattended by around 200 road safety professionals and advocates.

In her opening speech recorded for the conference, College Patron, the Governor-General Ms Quentin Bryce AC CVO congratulated this year’s winner of the award. A copy of the opening video can be viewed here: http://youtu.be/Huqpacb_gso

Team leaders, Barbara Minuzzo from the Royal Children’s Hospital and Helen Lindner from VicRoads , accepted the award on behalf of the 10 team members who included representatives from the Royal Automobile Club of Victoria, Britax Childcare, the Australian Child Restraint Resource Initiative, theVictorian Paediatric Rehabilitation Service Group at Latrobe University, Autism Victoria and the Association for Children with a Disability (ACD).

The ACRS National President, Mr Lauchlan McIntosh said the calibre of this year’s entries was very high.  “This again demonstrates the valuable contribution that road safety projects are making to the Australian community.”

“The actions of the TOCAN team have had a direct impact on national policy, practice and knowledge relating to the restraint of children with additional needs in motor vehicles.  This partnership has been instrumental in supporting collaborative partnerships of its members and in leading research relating to the transportation of children with additional needs.

“It is important to note that their research has found that in 25% of cases, families of children with additional needs do not purchase the child restraints recommended by therapists, and continue to transport their child in a way that is considered to be unsafe.”

“These combined achievements have resulted in increasing the awareness of government and industry of the issues relating to transporting children with additional needs”.

This year there were 18 finalists acrossAustralia vying to win the 3M-ACRS Diamond Road Safety Award.  Other finalists included the Peak Downs Highway Decade of Action for road Safety project, Mining safer roads project(Bathurst), Taming local roundabouts (Port Phillip), Road safety education program for Yr 11 students (Bundanoon, NSW), a crash course for the motorcyclist (Murchison), Indigenous road safety in Australia and the Drivesafe NT remote project.