Safety message on the cards for truckies

Halfway through a six-month road safety education campaign, anecdotal evidence suggests Waikato truck drivers are taking on board the messages being promoted.

Campaign co-ordinator Monique Haines, of Waikato Regional Council, says from both drivers and key road safety stakeholders in the region she is getting "fabulous" feedback on the cards and the messaging.

"It's clear from this feedback that drivers are learning what behaviour they need to observe and the importance of well-maintained vehicles.

"Lots of heavy vehicle drivers are already doing the right thing to minimise the crash risk on our roads. In the long term, as a result of this campaign, we would expect to see even better driver compliance, leading to reduced trauma on Waikato roads."

The Waikato Truck Legends road safety campaign was launched in April.

It involves a limited edition collector's card series featuring Waikato trucks.

Each card also has a unique road safety message aimed at heavy vehicle drivers and prizes will be on offer to those who collect all 10 in the series.

Sergeant Gilbert Williams, of Waikato's commercial vehicle investigation unit (CVIU), says cards are being handed out by officers every week to truck drivers.

"Even when a truck has been stopped for an offence, or an offence has been detected during a routine stop, presenting a Waikato Truck Legends card almost always ensures the driver leaves on a positive note.

"Truck drivers are often asking us about the cards unprompted, which gives us the opportunity to discuss the key road safety messages in the series and ensure the importance of heeding them is understood," Sergeant Williams says.

National Road Carriers executive officer Grant Turner says combining safety and image are the fundamentals to a successful road safety campaign.

"Usually, a well presented truck is one that is well looked after and that includes the running gear that needs regular checks and maintenance to make sure the truck is safe for the road."

The fifth card in the series features a Kenworth T408 logging truck from Alan Forbes Transport Ltd, Tokoroa. The message encourages drivers to check loads at the start of each trip, then 50-100km down the road and in between loads.

- Hamilton News

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