While many road safety trends indicate a slow but steady improvement, accidents and fatalities involving heavy rigid trucks are a consistent problem. Over the previous ten years, there have been almost 80 fatal crashes involving heavy trucks every single year.
In total, heavy vehicle accidents accounted for 224 deaths in 2016. Fatalities from heavy articulated trucks have almost halved over the previous 10 years, but rigid trucks and busses are no safer.
To improve public arwareness, the National Heavy Vehicle Regulator has joined forces with the Australian Trucking Association’s Safety Truck, aiming to drive children to become more aware of safety around heavy vehicles.
“We’re pleased to be able to support this program and bring the Safety Truck message to schools like Browns Plains to educate children on what trucks mean to them and how to safely behave around them,” NHVR CEO Sal Petroccitto said.
“At the NHVR we believe it is vital for the community to have positive relationship with the heavy vehicle industry, because we need them and they need us."
“We want the community to have an understanding of what role this industry plays in their everyday life.”
The Safety Truck participates in road safety education programmes, industry-led community events and other public events across Australia.
In 2016, the Safety Truck visited 15 schools across the country, directly engaging with almost 3000 primary and secondary school students. The truck also participated in over 30 events throughout the year, highlighting that road safety is an essential message at any age.
Australian Trucking Association Chair Noelene Watson said the ATA welcomes the NHVR’s support of the Safety Truck’s initiatives toward educating everyday motorists as well as preparing the next generation of Australian road users to share the road safely.
“The ATA is pleased the NHVR is taking the opportunity to build on its commitment to road safety investment,” Watson said.
The NHVR will provide $5000 sponsorship per year for four years.