Maribyrnong Council demands immediate truck ban

Melbourne council wants ban imposed until VicRoads audits companies in the municipality to determine if they are running unsafe trucks

By Ruza Zivkusic-Aftasi | October 16, 2013

The recent Cootes Transport tanker crash that killed two people in Sydney has prompted calls from a council for an immediate ban on all large trucks in Melbourne’s west.

Maribyrnong Council is demanding an immediate ban on all heavy vehicles, especially around schools and community facilities, until VicRoads conducts a compliance audit of truck companies in the municipality to determine if they are running unsafe rigs.

Authorities discovered hundreds of defects in Cootes’ tanker fleet in the wake of the October 1 crash, despite Cootes being enrolled in the National Heavy Vehicle Accreditation Scheme (NHVAS) in Victoria. VicRoads grounded a number of trucks until the defects were rectified.

Maribyrnong Council Infrastructure and Engineering Director Ian Butterworth says it is time the authorities "explain the systematic failure of their regulatory safety control systems in respect of trucks, particularly tanker trucks".

The council also plans to write to the Victorian Ombudsman requesting an investigation.

With over 20,000 trucks moving through the area each day, the council wants urgent action following the grounding of Cootes Transport vehicles.

There are three schools located on Somerville Road in Yarraville that has around 2,000 trucks each day.

The council recently endorsed the Maribyrnong City Council Truck Advocacy Plan, which advocates for more effective truck curfews until the Victorian Government removes trucks from residential streets.

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