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    Coat of ArmsMedia Release
    Minister for Main Roads, Road Safety and Ports and Minister for Energy, Biofuels and Water Supply
    The Honourable Mark Bailey

    Improving heavy vehicle safety in Queensland

    Minister for Main Roads, Road Safety and Ports and Minister for Energy, Biofuels and Water Supply
    The Honourable Mark Bailey

    Wednesday, February 03, 2016

    Improving heavy vehicle safety in Queensland

    The Palaszczuk Government is moving to improve the safety of Queensland motorists and truckies by putting into action a detailed plan to reduce accidents involving heavy vehicles.

    Main Roads and Road Safety Minister Mark Bailey and Transport Minister Stirling Hinchliffe have launched the Palaszczuk Government’s Heavy Vehicle Safety Action Plan 2016-18 at the first meeting of the Ministerial Freight Council.

    Minister Bailey said the plan presents 31 initiatives across six key action areas including safer roads, safer vehicles, fatigue management, safer speeds, seatbelts, impaired driving and driver distraction.

    “In 2015, heavy vehicles accounted for about 2.3% of all registered vehicles in Queensland, but were involved in 20.2% of all road fatalities,” Mr Bailey said.

    “Traffic crashes are usually due to a combination of factors including driver behaviour, speed, road conditions and vehicle safety. When you add a heavy vehicle into the equation, the size and mass of the vehicle means the outcome is more likely to be tragic.

    “In 2015 there were 49 lives lost, and hundreds of people were seriously injured as a result of heavy vehicle involvement in crashes. These numbers are too high, and more must be done.

    “This plan has been prepared in partnership with the Department of Transport and Main Roads, the Queensland Police Service and heavy vehicle industry to support Queensland’s Road Safety strategy and action plan.

    “I’d like to particularly acknowledge the work of Peter Garske, who chairs the group, and has been unwavering in his commitment to bring everyone together to improve heavy vehicle safety.”

    Transport Minister Stirling Hinchliffe said safety was important because heavy vehicles are a critical part of Queensland’s freight network, supporting jobs and delivering essential goods and services to communities.

    “A key action will be to audit rest areas across the state and determine where improvements are needed to ensure heavy vehicle drivers can take rest opportunities and comply with fatigue management laws in Queensland,” Mr Hinchliffe said.

    “The Palaszczuk Government’s plan reflects our determination to ensure truck drivers, as well as other road users, arrive at their destination safely.”

    Mr Bailey said often heavy vehicle drivers are not at fault when serious crashes take place on the states vast road network.

    “The Queensland Road Safety Action Plan 2015-17 includes an action about assisting motorists to share the road safely with heavy vehicles,” Mr Bailey said.

    “Achieving our vision of zero deaths and injuries on Queensland roads requires a serious commitment from the whole community and Heavy vehicles are a critical part of this vision.

    “The Palaszczuk Government and the heavy vehicle industry are committed to working collaboratively in this endeavour.”

    The Heavy Vehicle Safety Action Plan 2016-18 focusses on working with the heavy vehicle industry to make further safety improvements.

    Key actions include:

    • Conducting an audit of rest areas to determine where improvements are needed to assist the heavy vehicle industry to meet fatigue management needs
    • Encouraging the heavy vehicle industry to include safe road user behaviours for drivers in commercial contracts
    • Identifying why some heavy vehicle drivers do not wear seatbelts and develop options for how this can be addressed

    For more information on the Heavy Vehicle Safety Action Plan 2016–18 go to www.tmr.qld.gov.au

    ENDS

    Media Contacts:     Minister Bailey                   Tim Shipstone           0419 246 157

                                  Minister Hinchliffe              Jess Hill                    0475 950 772