Wednesday, April 24, 2024

ATA and NHVR unite for level crossing safety

The Australian Trucking Association (ATA) and National Heavy Vehicle Regulator (NHVR) have issued a crucial safety notice to help truck drivers to remain vigilant at level crossings.

The National Level Crossing Safety Notice reminds heavy vehicle drivers of the potentially life-saving safety measures they must adhere to around rail lines.

ATA CEO, Mathew Munro said the safety notice was a part of a shared commitment to reducing fatalities and injuries at the more than 20,000 level crossings intersecting with roads and pathways across the country.

“Between 1 July 2014 and 31 December 2022, there were 39 lives lost and 49 serious injuries at Australia’s rail crossings,” Mr Munro said.

“These aren’t just numbers; these are people who didn’t made it home safely to their loved ones.

“There have also been thousands of near misses at rail crossings.

“We’re putting out a unified reminder for truck drivers to prioritise not only their own safety, but the safety of their fellow road users and rail workers.

“There’s no room to take risks when it comes to trains.”

NHVR CEO, Sal Petroccitto OAM said level crossings presented unique challenges for heavy vehicles, meaning drivers needed to be aware of their surroundings and avoid any distraction when approaching rail lines.

“Trucks don’t have the same stopping time as lighter vehicles, so it’s critical all heavy vehicle drivers take extra caution around the tracks,” Mr Petroccitto said.

“The National Level Crossing Safety Notice includes simple do’s and don’ts for drivers to remember.

“These include reducing speed and checking blind spots before crossing, adhering to any warning signs, boom gates and lights, and assessing the road condition.

“It’s imperative for truck drivers not to become complacent; a momentary lapse in concentration or judgement can be fatal.

“Even with efficient braking systems, it takes a considerable amount of time for a train to stop, especially when travelling at high speeds.

“Taking a risk at a level crossing is never worth it, and by following the guidelines in the safety alert, we can collectively reduce the likelihood of tragedy occurring and ensure all road users reach their destination safely.”

You can find the National Level Crossing Safety Notice here.

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