Safety crackdown on trucks
Heavy vehicle operators are being warned to ensure their fleets comply with road safety regulations and National Heavy Vehicle Laws under a new government crackdown.
Transport Safety Services (TSS) officers will carry out random and targeted checks across Victoria to ensure truck drivers are doing the right thing.
Roadworthiness of heavy vehicles will be the focus with tyre, windscreen, oil leaks, seatbelts, brakes, suspension and coupling defects continuing to be common breaches for truck operators.
The heavy vehicle operations will also enforce truck curfews in areas including Melbourne’s inner west, which are designed to limit the number of heavy vehicles in busy residential areas.
While the vast majority of drivers and operators do the right thing, overweight trucks, unsecured loads, speed and log book offences still pose a serious risk to truck drivers and other road users.
TSS officers have carried out more than 20 operations across Victoria so far this year, targeting known heavy vehicle crash locations, in order to reduce the occurrence of fatalities and serious injuries.
The TSS team also conducts site visits targeting companies with previous non-compliance issues, working with operators to address issues and reduce reoffending.
There have already been 34 fatalities involving heavy vehicles this year – compared to 27 fatalities in 2018.
While truck and bus operators are responsible for driving safely and ensuring their vehicles comply with the laws many of the crashes involving heavy vehicles are caused by other motorists.
A recent study from the National Heavy Vehicle Regulator (NHVR) found many motorists don’t leave enough room around trucks and aren’t aware that heavy vehicles have large blind spots.
Car drivers are urged to allow enough space when passing and merging in front of trucks in traffic as well being aware that heavy vehicles have large blind spots and require more room to stop safely.