Work still to do on technology to address truck blind spots

By: Brad Gardner, Photography by: Brad Gardner


ATA responds to coroner’s call to ban bonneted trucks without blind spot technology

Work still to do on technology to address truck blind spots
Long way to go: ATA CEO Chris Melham says there is still much work to be done on the development of technology to monitor a truck's blind spot.

 

A recommendation to ban bonneted trucks from city streets without blind spot technology may be impractical, with the Australian Trucking Association (ATA) saying work on such technology still has a long way to go before it is ready.

Queensland coroner Christine Clements recently recommended the ban following a fatal collision between a truck and cyclist at a busy Brisbane intersection last year.

In her published findings, Clements noted the danger bonneted trucks posed when operating within congested environments, adding that the truck involved in the fatal collision had a blind spot of 7m.

ATA CEO Chris Melham says there is a still substantial work to do on the development of technology to address a truck’s blind spots.

"New technology is slowly becoming available to monitor the blind spot in front of a truck. However developing the standards for this new technology is a complex task, with a long program of work still to be done," he says.

Melham has welcomed the coroner’s call for an education campaign about blind spots on trucks.

The ATA's interactive road safety exhibition, the Safety Truck, attempts to inform the general public about trucks and how to share the road safely with them.

"We strongly support the coroner’s recommendation that cyclists, motorcyclists and car drivers be given better information about the blind spots and limitations of heavy vehicles," Melham says.

Clements also wants signs posted at the rear of trucks to alert motorists and cyclists about the danger of putting themselves in front of bonneted trucks.

Cyclist Rebecca Tine Lousdal Meyer was in front of a Kenworth truck and dog combination on September 11, 2014 when the vehicle clipped her bike and sent her under the wheels, killing her instantly.

The truck driver told the inquest he did not know Meyer was in front of him.

Witnesses to the accident reported seeing the cyclist in front of the truck while waiting at the intersection to turn, but they could not say if Meyer was always in front or moved in front of the truck.

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