Industry experts discuss vehicle visibility possibilities

ITC meeting looks into improvements in vehicle safety techniques


The Australian Trucking Association (ATA’s) Industry Technical Council (ITC) meeting in Canberra saw trucking experts discuss various issues surrounding road safety improvements.

On the agenda was a discussion on the heavy vehicle visibility technical advisory procedure (TAP), a document that aims to inform the industry about the safety benefits of applying high visibility marking to the side and rear of trucks.

The ATA, along with other industry representatives, is currently in the process of updating of TAP.

Once complete, the document will provide voluntary guidance to increase visibility on roads, plus performance, ideal placement and recommended material specifications for the markings.

The delegates also heard a study by the United States National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) based on the effectiveness of retroreflective tape on heavy trailers that shows improved truck visibility in low light conditions can reduce rear end and side collisions by 41 per cent and 37 per cent respectively.

"These road safety benefits illustrate how important these markings are, and we strongly advise that all truck owners consider adhering to a higher level of lighting and reflector requirements," ATA senior engineering adviser Chris Loose says.

The meeting also discussed the next issue of the ATA’s truck impact chart, which is currently in its final stage of approval by the ITC.

The chart highlights how higher productivity freight vehicles (HPFV) not only have lower impact on roads per tonne of freight moved, but also have safety and environmental benefits.

"The case for investing in modern higher productivity vehicles speaks for itself," Loose says.

"Not only is there evidence showing that the emissions are further reduced, but road crash data from Austroads shows significant safety benefits for all road users from fewer larger trucks on the roads and the highly advanced safety technology found in these vehicles."

The council comprises experts from transport companies and industry bodies. For more details, visit the ATA website.



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