Safety warning to heavy vehicle drivers

4 December 2012

Roads and Maritime Services (RMS) today issued a warning to truck drivers after several high speed incidents and crashes in the past several days.

Director of Customer and Compliance Peter Wells said one truck driver was caught using a handheld phone while speeding through a school zone near Cowra last week.

“The 35-year-old man was issued with infringement notices for speeding in a school zone and using a hand held mobile phone while driving,” Mr Wells said.

“Last week RMS and officers from the NSW Police Force conducted operations in the Grafton, Dubbo and Yass areas targeting heavy vehicle compliance.

“As a result three truck drivers were issued with infringement notices for speed limiter tampering offences.

“Tampering with a heavy vehicle speed limiter is a serious offence which attracts penalties in excess of $2000.

“This behavior is unacceptable and puts other road users in grave danger,” Mr Wells said.

During the operation 18 heavy vehicles were detected which were not speed limiter compliant. The operators were issued defect notices to have their speed limiters made compliant.

Mr Wells said  the number of truck crashes across the state in the past week is disturbing, with one crash between two prime movers resulting in one driver sustaining a number of compound fractures to his right leg.

"RMS understands freight needs to be moved efficiently and strongly supports a productive freight sector, but it must be done safely,” Mr Wells said.

“Speed limits are there to keep all road users safe and must be obeyed. It is disappointing speed limiter tampering continues to be detected on NSW roads.

“RMS and the NSW Police Force will continue to work together to stamp out this dangerous and potentially life threatening practice.

“We have asked truck engine manufacturers and companies which service and supply the engines to step up and help manage this risk.

“Heavy vehicles detected with a speed limiter which has been tampered with will be grounded and RMS will examine the evidence for a chain of responsibility investigation,” Mr Wells said.

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