The auditor’s report found there was no evidence to support the claimed safety benefits for motorcyclists and scooter riders.
It also found Victoria’s WRB rollout was almost $100m over budget, over time and under-maintained.
MAG Northern Ireland rep Martyn Boyd says there is “much work still to be done, but this is a good step forward”.
Northern IrelandDepartment for Infrastructure officers told him that regulatory issues and difficulties with alternative systems made it difficult for an immediate unilateral cessation of their use.
“Nevertheless, they understood and accepted our perspective,” he says.
At the end of the meeting, the officers:
Accepted that wire rope and steel post type crash barriers are hazardous to motorcyclists’ safety in a collision;
Agreed to actively promote, through Northern Ireland road restraint systems standards, the wider use of much safer motorcycle protection system barrier installations at high-risk locations which are or could be particularly hazardous to motorcyclists; and
Agreed to work with the local universities on any research projects, with the goal of developing a crash barrier system that is much less harmful to motorcyclists but still effective against twin-track vehicles.
These official Irish and Australian acceptances of the dangers of WRBs represent a significant step in the move to have them banned.
Meanwhile, the potentially lethal barriers continue to be rolled out across the nation.