Trucking industry demands should be met to protect all road users
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Trucking industry demands should be met to protect all road users

Changes demanded by the truck industry should be implemented if the government is serious about reducing the road toll.

The industry has appealed for an injection of more than $12 million for heavy vehicle road safety, and the introduction of a National Road Safety Commission.

The Australian Trucking Association has also called for the Australian Transport Safety Bureau to take over responsibility for investigating truck accidents, relieving the coroner of that duty in an effort to speed up the process.

The calls come following the revelation that truck deaths in NSW soared by more than 80 per cent in 2017.

Industry leaders conceded there is a problem with truck deaths and slow uptake of safer vehicles.

Typically - and still so tragically - road accidents are an issue that's front of mind at this time of the year.

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A spate of festive season fatalities in the general road population, almost double the number experienced in previous years, has ripened the issue for debate.

With the capital surrounded by arterial highways, truck accidents are scarily commonplace. While by no means an exhaustive list, truck accidents aren't unusual for Canberra and its surrounds.

In January 2017, a driver died on the Clyde Mountain after his truck rolled near Pooh Bear Corner. In May, a truck driver died after he collided with a tree near Marulan. In October, a truck driver escaped with minor injuries after his truck crashed and burst into flames on the Hume Highway near Berrima. In August, a man was trapped after his truck crashed with a grader on the Majura Parkway. In September, a truck carrying glass crashed on the Kings Highway at Braidwood. In November, a cheese truck crashed near Goulburn, the driver unhurt. In December, a truck and a car collided at Jindabyne with the car driver transported to hospital in a critical condition.

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The trucking association's chief of staff, Bill McKinley, is right when he says the industry has a long way to go.

Heavy vehicle safety is something that affects all road users. The government should spend the money to make our roads safer for all.

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