With high traffic volumes expected over the Easter long weekend, the Australian Trucking Association has called for road users to be patient and share the road safely on the road these holidays.
ATA Chief Executive Christopher Melham said it was critical for drivers to stay well-rested and leave plenty of time to get to their destination.
“We all know there’s a lot of extra traffic and traffic delays on the road over the Easter long weekend. But it only takes one bad egg on the road to turn a holiday getaway into a serious accident,” Mr Melham said.
“Truck drivers will still be hard at work over the Easter period. Share the road safely with these heavy vehicles by avoiding blind spots – particularly the ones right behind the truck and close in by the left passenger door – and waiting for a place with plenty of visibility if you need to overtake.
“Don’t let frustration or deadlines turn you into a bad egg on the road this Easter. Leave plenty of time to get where you’re going, show respect for your fellow road users, and take a break if you feel tired.”
Mr Melham also reminded trucking operators to factor holiday traffic into their usual planning process.
“We all know there will be delays on the road, so it’s essential to include extra time in your Easter schedules to account for this extra traffic,” Mr Melham said.
“Operators should also remind their drivers to keep an eye out for holiday motorists – be courteous, stay back and leave them plenty of room to manoeuvre.”
Mr Melham said there were a few tips that motorists and truck drivers should note to make everyone’s Easter safer:
- Stick to the speed limit and take regular rest breaks.
- Don’t cut in front of trucks. Truck drivers leave a large gap between their vehicle and the car in front because a heavy vehicle needs almost twice as much room to brake as a car.
- Stay out of truck blind spots – if you can’t see the truck’s mirrors, the driver can’t see you.
- Leave room for heavy vehicles to get in and out of roadside rest areas. Heavy vehicle drivers are legally obligated to take rest breaks at certain times, but may not be able to take them if other road users are parked too close to the entrance or exit of a rest area.