Holiday-makers using truck rest stops raise driver ire

By: Paul Howell


Trucking group urges NSW Government to keep caravans and campers out of truck rest stops.

Holiday-makers using truck rest stops raise driver ire
ATA NSW manager Jodie Broadbent says rest stops are increasingly being used as camping grounds.

 

Truck drivers are urging holiday-makers in New South Wales to steer clear of designated rest bays along national freight routes.

The NSW branch of the Australian Trucking Association (ATA NSW) has also raised its concerns with roads minister Duncan Gay.

ATA NSW manager Jodie Broadbent says rest stops are increasingly being used as camping grounds by groups hoping to avoid the fees associated with caravan parks and designated camping zones.

The issue was highlighted last weekend when a truck driver was unable to find a space at a rest stop near Brunswick Heads, a popular beach destination in the north of NSW.

The driver posted a photo to ATA NSW, which took up the cause with Gay and on social media.

Broadbent says the immediate solution is a simple one: to signpost rest stops as truck-only spaces. 

"We hope some of these [signs] will be rolled out at parking bays across NSW key arterial freight routes soon," she says, adding that signs along the Pacific Highway are particularly urgent and should be installed by Christmas.

Broadbent has also reached out to caravanning communities online to highlight truck drivers’ need for continual access to rest stops.

"It's important to remember that truck drivers are required by law to take rest breaks at certain times," she advises.

"If you must stop in a parking bay, please don't do so over extended periods."

Comment is being sought from Gay, who has previously championed the rest stop access cause.

Earlier this year he suggested an in-vehicle app that let drivers know if there is space at an upcoming rest stop could lead to a smart phone-enabled booking system for the spaces.

He says the NSW Government is also looking at building more rest stop spaces along key freight routes.

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