No easy answer

The thoughts of Hills residents are no doubt with the families of those affected by the fatal crash at the bottom of the freeway on Monday.
Not only is one of the drivers collected in the runaway truck smash a local woman – but most would acknowledge that it is only by good luck that they were not among those waiting at the lights at the intersection of Glen Osmond, Portrush and Cross roads.
So many people in this region use the freeway and that intersection and with thousands more set to build houses in Mt Barker and Murray Bridge, the volume of traffic travelling down that major transport corridor is only going to increase.
If nothing else, this tragedy will galvanise Federal and State authorities into finding ways to make the route and its Toll Gate destination safer.
What those solutions might be is anyone’s guess.
It is a steep gradient and the State Road Safety Minister Tony Piccolo has said that a third arrester bed is not feasible due to the terrain. That project might need to be revisited.
In the wake of the 2010 runaway truck fatality that claimed the life of the man waiting at a bus stop, new road rules now restrict the speed of trucks with five axles or more to 60km/h down the freeway.
Given Monday’s crash involved a small sewage tanker, not a semi-trailer, weight restrictions might be added to the mix.
But that will only chip away at the problem.
There will be some who will insist that curfews for heavy vehicles are the answer.
No doubt that option will be considered, however, it must be remembered that the freeway was built to be a national freight route and we all rely on heavy vehicles to deliver the goods we use in everyday life.
Plus, this crash happened in the middle of the day – not in peak hour.
Cars and trucks have to share the freeway and both groups need to recognise their mutual responsibility towards making that road a safer place.
Commuters need a better attitude and perhaps better education about how to share the road with heavy vehicles.
Truck drivers and, more importantly, transport companies need to make sure their vehicles are safe and that they are driven safely.

1 Comment on "No easy answer"

  1. Ok, yes we have the speed dropped 10km/h, that make no difference to a speeding, out of control truck.
    Why, because the government feels they’re doing something and it’s costing nothing.
    Firstly it’s the trucks losing control and the damage and death is from trucks not cars.
    So options
    1- All trucks on left lane, fine that’s good. Also mark the lane so cars stay out and trucks stay in.
    Its easy.
    2 It won’t be long till another massive crash at the bottom, something will happen for sure, because of the growth rate in Mt Barker and Murray Bridge.
    So step 3. Excavate another lane for trucks on the down side…. Yes that’s money and a big job.
    Then you have room and can build proper off ramps.

    Also if the government was serious why not make off ramps FREE for trucks if they enter. Let me guess government has no money.

    Unfortunately there will be more crashes before anything serious is done. Let’s hope that its not a bus full of people next time that gets wiped out.
    To divert trucks to Barossa, you need new roads, maintenance on existing, and the cost for trucking goes up.

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