TWU

Horrific Crash Highlights Need For Solution To Crisis In Trucking, TWU Warns

Release date: 10/03/2016

TWU MEDIA RELEASE, 10 March 2016
 
Three children have been left without their parents who were tragically killed after a horrific truck crash in Melbourne’s west this morning. The incident highlights the crisis in trucking and shows the need for transport operators and wealthy retailers to ensure drivers are paid a safe, fair wage with well-maintained vehicles, the Transport Workers’ Union has said.

The crash happened today on Hopkins Road at Truganina about 6am with initial reports suggesting two cars and two trucks were involved. Today’s deaths bring to 14 the number of people killed in truck crashes in the last 10 days – six occurred in Victoria.
 
“My condolences go to the family and friends affected by this tragedy, which is yet to be fully investigated. We know that a deadly cycle is at play in transport with major retailers and manufacturers squeezing transport operators and drivers with low cost contracts to the point that our roads are not safe,” said TWU National Secretary Tony Sheldon.
 
The horror crash comes just a day after Ai Group and NatRoad made applications to delay a road safety watchdog ruling aimed at saving lives.
 
“This ruling addresses deaths in truck crashes and will make the industry safe and sustainable. It will ensure drivers are not under pressure to skip breaks, speed, drive long hours with overloaded vehicles in a stressed and tired state. It beggars belief that Ai Group and NatRoad would want to stand in the way of this ruling,” said Sheldon. Truck drivers and the TWU will visit Canberra next week to press the case for a focus on truck deaths.
 
The ruling sets down minimum safe rates for drivers, ensuring they are paid all their costs and for all the work they do. Most importantly the Order holds major retailers to account for the pressure on transport operators and drivers though their low cost contracts. This push for profits ultimately costs lives.
 
Previous deaths in the last 10 days include:
 
  • NSW, 9 Mar 2016: A man was killed following a head-on collision between his car and a truck on Anderson Drive at Beresfield.
  • WA, 8 Mar 2016: A 64-year-old truck driver was killed when his prime mover hit a tree and caught fire on Albany Highway in Tenterden.
  • NSW, 8 Mar 2016: A man died after his car and a truck crashed on Tomago Road in Williamtown.
  • NSW, 7 Mar 2016: A man died following a head-on crash between his van and a truck on the Pacific Highway at Cooperabung.
  • SA, 5 Mar 2016: A 47-year-old man and a 44-year-old woman, who were both truck drivers, were killed when their truck hit a guardrail and burst into flames on the Eyre Highway near Port Augusta.
  • VIC, 5 Mar 2016: A truck driver was killed when his truck hit a tree on the Western Freeway in Darley.
  • WA, 4 Mar 2016: Two 25-year-old men died when their motorcycle crashed with a truck on McCombe Road in Halifax.
  • VIC, 3 Mar 2016: Two people, a female sedan driver and a male truck driver, died when their vehicles collided head-on on Latrobe Road in Maryvale.
  • VIC, 1 Mar 2016: A female truck driver died after being pinned under her truck that rolled at a worksite on the South Gippsland Highway in Nyora.


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