14 December 2012
In less than a week three people died in three separate crashes involving six trucks on Queensland roads.
And while Forensic Crash Units are investigating these crashes, the Transport Workers’ Union is demanding the Government take it a step further and treat it as a workplace incident.
“A truck driver’s job is to drive, yet when they are involved in a crash, a workplace health and safety investigation is not being carried out,” TWU QLD Branch Secretary Peter Biagini said.
“Over 330 people die on our roads each year involving trucks, and what we need to see is each of these crashes be investigated as a workplace incident so the truth behind the crash comes out, not simply what happened.
“Christmas is a bad time of year for our roads, and we want everyone to reach their destinations safely,” Mr Biagini said.
“But only through full investigations into why a truck is involved in a crash, will the truth about driving hours, company pressures and conditions come out.”
The Road Safety Remuneration Tribunal, who will investigate companies who put unrealistic pressures and deadlines on drivers from 1 January 2013, still cannot come soon enough.
“The Tribunal has announced they will focus on four major sectors in our industry, including major retailers like Coles who have economic power and control the industry through dictating prices, standards and conditions,” Mr Biagini said.
“This is important because one-in-every-three trucks on our road work for big retailers like Coles, who are setting unfair and unreasonable demands and deadlines that push drivers to their limits.
“Without truck drivers Australia stops – there would be no petrol in our pumps, no food in our supermarkets, and no presents on the shelves or delivered to our doors to go under the Christmas tree.”
Mick O’Brien – 0411 875 910