Release date: 17/04/2019

TWU MEDIA RELEASE, 16 April 2019
The Transport Workers’ Union is calling for safety to be prioritised in trucking over the busy Easter period, following almost one truck crash death per day last month.

In March, 28 people were killed in truck crashes, including 10 truck drivers. So far this year, 20 truck drivers have been killed on Australian roads.
“The skewed belief that speedy delivery is more important than road safety is exacerbated at busy periods like the Easter break. We urge the wealthy companies at the top of supply chains to ease the pressure on truck drivers and ensure there is enough money in the pot for trucks to be properly maintained and goods to be delivered safely,” TWU National Secretary Michael Kaine said.
In April 2016, the Federal Government tore down a road safety watchdog, despite its own report finding truck crashes would be reduced by 28%. Nothing has been put it in its place.
Since the road safety watchdog was abolished, 547 people have been killed in truck crashes.
“March was filled with horror truck crashes, with nearly one person dead for each day of the month. The Federal Government has been sitting on its hands since the abolition of the road safety watchdog in 2016. We’ve had three years without anything in its place to protect our truck drivers and our road users. Thousands of people have lost a loved one since then. The Government must step up and act immediately to stop the slaughter on our roads,” Kaine continued.  
The ALP at its national conference in December adopted into its policy platform a resolution stating: "A Federal Labor Government will, as a matter of urgency, legislate for a national system of Safe Rates consisting of an independent body with responsibility for safe standards of work including fair payments and conditions.”
Road transport is Australia’s deadliest industry. A truck driver is 13 times more likely to die at work than any other worker.

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