Sapol probes driver and firm over range of defects

South Eastern Freeway arrester bed used to halt rigid truck and trailer

Sapol probes driver and firm over range of defects
A Sapol picture of the blocks of wood


A truck driver and a trucking company are being investigated after a rigid truck and trailer pulled into an arrester bed on the South Eastern Freeway in Adelaide this week.

South Australian Police (Sapol) officers from the Heavy Vehicle Enforcement Unit received reports from motorists about 12.40pm on Sunday, advising that a heavy vehicle had entered the arrester bed on the South Eastern Freeway at Leawood Gardens.

Inspection of the truck identified that it had severely overheated brakes on all the axles.  

"The temperatures reached were that high that they had started to burn and discolour the paint on the rims," Sapol stated.

"The trailer was also inspected and found to have an inoperative braking system.

"The electronic brakes on the trailer had not been connected and blocks of wood had been used between the chassis and suspension."

Read how the industry supports training including for this descent, here

The driver, a 33-year-old man from Victoria and the unnamed company are being investigated for using an unsafe vehicle on the road, failing to keep and carry a work diary as required and whether or not the driver used an appropriate gear whilst descending the South Eastern Freeway.

It is a requirement of heavy vehicles to be driven in a low enough gear to enable the vehicle to be driven safely on the South Eastern Freeway without the use of a primary brake.

Both the truck and trailer were defected and towed from the scene.

"The arrester beds are strategically placed on the Freeway to bring heavy vehicles to a safe stop in the event of brake failure or other emergency," Traffic Services Branch inspector Angas Yates said.  

"The failure by drivers and companies to not ensure the vehicles are complying with safety and vehicle maintenance could potentially result in injury or death."


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