A comprehensive effort by NSW authorities to curb heavy vehicle speeding on the state’s roads has been vindicated by new statistics.
Figures released this week by Roads and Maritime Services (RMS) and NSW Police reveal that the number of heavy vehicles caught speeding at more than 105 km/h has decreased by 79 per cent over the past year.
Police and RMS had implemented a coordinated approach to reduce the incidence of dangerous driving behaviour among heavy vehicle drivers after the deaths of three members of the same family at Menangle in 2012.
According to minister for police Mike Gallacher – who together with minister for roads and ports Duncan Gay released a statement yesterday (February) announcing the new figures – joint enforcement was working on NSW roads.
“This is a fantastic result and shows what can be achieved with the combined efforts of strong commitment, enforcement, education and technology,” said Mr Gallacher.
Mr Gay said that NSW motorists could “now feel genuinely safer” on the road without the threat of heavy vehicles hurtling down highways in excess of the speed limit.
The minister for roads and ports said that authorities were coupling a concerted effort to educate the heavy vehicle industry with smart use of technology.
“Technology now allows RMS to detect the same heavy vehicle at more than one site, enabling clear speed trends to emerge throughout the year, providing clear intelligence on where the most urgent action is needed,” explained Mr Gay.
Despite the positive results so far, Mr Gallacher stressed that now was no time to be complacent.
The fact remained that though heavy vehicles are at fault in about 40 per cent of the crashes they are involved in, the risk of fatalities in these crashes is very high.
“By ensuring the vast majority of heavy vehicles are travelling at the speed limit, the severity of those crashes is reduced,” said Mr Gallacher.
Heavy vehicles pose a larger risk because of their bigger size and weight, which mean that there is more likelihood of a collision with a smaller vehicle turning into a fatal car accident.
Truck drivers are also at risk of injury while out on the roads. Those who are hurt in crashes may be entitled to truck accident injury compensation.
No win no fee lawyers can advise people injured in heavy vehicle accidents on this and their possible entitlement to workers compensation if they were working at the time of the incident.