TMC 2017: Video urges industry to have serious safety talk

In a video industry trainer Ian Pendered has called for serious company discussion about safety


The series of recent truck crashes has spurred the Australian Trucking Association (ATA) and National Transport Insurance (NTI) to urge companies and drivers to focus more heavily on safe driving and strategies that support it.

In a plea from this year’s Technical and Maintenance Conference (TMC) also uploaded as a video on facebook, industry trainer Ian Pendered tells transport company operators they need to talk to their people about driver distraction.

Pendered has been in the industry for more than 45 years as a driver, business owner and now trainer.

"We recently have had a series of tragic accidents—and I mean tragic accidents," he says.

"Take a look at your business. Talk to your people. Make your drivers and schedulers aware of distractions: drivers eating in the cab, drivers drinking in the cab. Thinking about what we are doing.

"We want people to come home safely."

ATA CEO Ben Maguire said that driver distraction was a growing cause of truck crashes.

He urged businesses to hold toolbox talks in the wake of the accidents, with an emphasis on listening to their staff about how to reduce distractions on the road.

"We have the busiest time of year coming up. Drivers need to be completely focused on their work. I urge trucking businesses to look at what they can do to remove or help drivers minimise as many cab distractions as possible," Maguire says.

It was a theme NTI has taken up separately, saying it was crucial that action took place now.

"NTI’s data, including our 2017 National Truck Accident Research Report, shows that, year on year, October and November are amongst the worst months for claims frequency," NTI CEO Tony Clark says.

"In 2016, we saw in increase of over 70 per cent in the number of collision claims being reported in October and November.

"This not only included collisions with other vehicles, but also with roundabouts, power poles and more.

"At NTI, we know that the majority of truck drivers on our roads are highly skilled professionals who lead by example in sharing the road, however it’s important that all drivers are proactive and take extra care during the busy lead-up to the holiday season."

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