SA Police busy on the Adelaide trucking front

Safety blitz and a B-double brakes drama have officers and authorities on their toes

SA Police busy on the Adelaide trucking front
Truck checks part of normal compliance operations


South Australia Police (Sapol)  and other authorities undertook a truck roadworthiness action in Adelaide's north-west yesterday, with the recent Transfield crash in mind.

The action, part of Operation Wayward aimed at truck safety compliance, involved police from the Heavy Vehicle Enforcement Section and inspectors from the Department of Planning, Transport and Infrastructure (DPTI), along with SafeWork SA staff.

"Operations such as Wayward form part of normal compliance operations undertaken throughout the year, including recent DPTI operations at Port Wakefield and Monteith, to help improve safety on South Australian roads and enforce compliance by all those in the heavy vehicle chain of responsibility," DPTI compliance and investigations manager Stephen Smith says.

Police inspected 70 vehicles, with 31 defected due to issues with steering, brakes or suspension.

The 31 had major defects, which mean they need to undergo repairs and be re-inspected before being allowed back on the road.

"We know that most drivers and businesses take safety very seriously. However a few don't. It is those drivers and operators police are targeting," Superintendent Bob Fauser, the officer in charge of Traffic Support Branch, says.

"Recently we saw the tragic death of two innocent motorists after a truck crashed at the bottom of the South Eastern Freeway. 

"Truck drivers and their companies have a responsibility to do the right thing; as the size and weight of one of the vehicles in a crash increases, so does the severity of the crash.

"For safety's sake we urge heavy vehicle drivers and companies to do the right thing by making sure they are complying with the law and their industry regulations."

Meanwhile, Sapol has praised the police response to an incident where a combination with smoke coming from its wheels was guided through intersections with the help of traffic management systems.

Fauser says the officers involved had done an "extraordinary thing" in preventing a potentially disastrous accident.

Following an inspection, police will allege the prime mover had oil in its air tanks, which meant the brakes were malfunctioning, and that neither trailer had working brakes.

It will also be alleged the second trailer had cracks in the suspension and axle components.

No one was injured in the incident on the South Eastern Freeway.

The driver, 32, from Croydon South in Victoria, was reported for driving without due care and regulatory offences and an investigation into the unnamed company is continuing.

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