VIDEO: Cameron Interstate expresses shock at Grafton incident


Company thanks police after B-double is driven erratically on Pacific Highway

VIDEO: Cameron Interstate expresses shock at Grafton incident
Ben Maguire and Phil Brooks have both commented on the incident

 

Linehaul operator Cameron Interstate has responded with shock after a subcontractor was arrested following a B-double dangerous driving incident in New South Wales at weekend.

Cameron Interstate director Denis Blaney issued a statement about incident and NSW Police responded in a positive way to that.

"We are currently working with the NSW police force in their investigations of an incident involving one of our subcontractor drivers, which occurred on the evening of Saturday 16 February 2019, and resulted in the driver’s arrest and hospitalisation," Blaney states.

"Fortunately, it is our understanding that no police force member, nor member of the public, were injured as a result of the driver’s actions.

"We want to thank the NSW police force for their responsive and decisive action.

"We understand the driver has been released from Grafton Base Hospital. We have been in contact with the driver’s employer and have offered support.

"This is an isolated incident, however we are deeply concerned about what has happened.

"Cameron Interstate Pty Ltd treats safety as a top priority for our employees, including our subcontractors, other road users and the general public.

"We invest heavily in the health and wellbeing of our drivers (both Company and subcontractors) through various programs, including safety education and training and medical assessments of future drivers along with random drug and alcohol tests for all drivers during their engagement at Cameron Interstate Pty Ltd.

"Because of what has occurred, we are working diligently to understand what has happened and the likely causes to identify if any further improvements can be made to our safety programs and our hard earned reputation as a leading rod safety advocate in the transport sector."


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On posting video of the incident, NSW Police stakeholder relations manager Phillip Brooks gave his take on the events of the weekend.

"I have spoken with Glen Cameron at length yesterday & again a short time ago," Brooks states.  

"This was a case of a subcontractor truck, with a driver that was unknown to his business.  

"This driver, a 39 year old from Qld, has been charged with 10 offences, including drink driving & assault police.  It is the case that we had to have a police car in front to warn other traffic, and had to wrestle this driver out of the vehicle.  

"As you can appreciate, this driver would have had to be seen by others at the beginning of the journey, which you may wish to consider when handing over a load, not only to mitigate driver fatigue, but also in terms of potential drug use.  Drug testing remains an issue across the board.

"As you can imagine, Glen Cameron is as shocked as anyone after this event, and based on an otherwise exemplary safety & compliance record, this would certainly be a 'one off' for his business."    

Police state that a the incident was unfolding,  multiple emergency calls began being received reporting that a heavy vehicle with no headlights was being driven erratically northbound on the Pacific Highway, swerving between lanes and running over guard posts

Officers attached to Coffs/Clarence Highway Patrol intercepted the B-double at Glenugie, about 20km south of Grafton, and directed the driver to stop.

However, police allege the driver instead attempted to run the highway patrol vehicle off the road after a pursuit was initiated.

Highway Patrol officers followed the vehicle north along the highway to Grafton, where a caged police truck was positioned to stop southbound vehicles as a precaution.

"Police will allege the driver of the B-double side-swiped the police truck as it was driven through the town; the truck crew were not in the vehicle at the time," the force says.

The pursuit continued through the town and a further 50km north before the driver stopped on the Mororo Bridge at Chatsworth Island.

"Police allege the driver resisted attempts to remove him from the cabin before he was taken into custody," the force says.

"The 48-year-old driver, from Nerang in Queensland, was taken to Grafton Base Hospital for mandatory testing, and due to concerns he was allegedly under the influence of illicit drugs.

"He has been kept in hospital for observation due to concerns for his health."

The driver reportedly did not apply for bail and hearing of the case in Grafton Local Court will resume on Monday.

Australian Trucking Association (ATA) CEO Ben Maguire said the behaviour demonstrated was completely unacceptable.

"The actions of this rogue truck driver are in no way a reflection of who we are. It’s simply not us," Maguire says.

"Australia’s trucking industry is home to thousands of highly skilled professionals that have a strong safety commitment, and the appalling actions of this driver are not typical behaviour."

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