Crane speed lim­its con­sid­ered

Big Rigs - - NEWS -

THE in­quest into the death of a Queens­land mother and her six-year-old son has re­sulted in a call for na­tion­wide changes to the reg­u­la­tion of spe­cial pur­pose ve­hi­cles.

Sam Leonardi and son Sa­muel lost their lives in Septem­ber 2013 when an ar­tic­u­lated crane col­lided with their ute.

In re­view­ing the tragic event in Oc­to­ber, coro­ner John Hut­ton made a num­ber of rec­om­men­da­tions in the hope of avoid­ing sim­i­lar events.

Notably Mr Hut­ton rec­om­mended a speed re­stric­tion of 60km/h on all mo­bile ar­tic­u­lated steer­ing cranes and re­stricted ac­cess to cranes on roads and mo­tor­ways where speed re­stric­tions could be un­safe.

Fur­ther ex­plo­ration into sta­bil­ity con­trol mech­a­nisms and lat­eral sta­bil­ity test­ing was also rec­om­mended.

The re­port, which cited the reg­u­la­tor’s will­ing­ness to par­tic­i­pate, was crit­i­cal of the NHVR, crit­i­cis­ing pre­vi­ous in­di­ca­tions to de­lay ac­tion on speed changes un­til bet­ter qual­ity in­for­ma­tion was ob­tained.

“The Na­tional Heavy Ve­hi­cle Reg­u­la­tor seems to be of the view that if it can­not be sta­tis­ti­cally demon­strated that mo­bile ar­tic­u­lated steer­ing cranes have his­tor­i­cally caused more fa­tal­i­ties on the roads com­pared to other heavy ve­hi­cles, the Na­tional Heavy Ve­hi­cle Reg­u­la­tor will not take ac­tion to limit their speed,” the coro­ner wrote.

In re­sponse, NHVR chief ex­ec­u­tive Sal Petroc­citto wel­comed a num­ber of pro­posed rec­om­men­da­tions, yet held out on the speed lim­i­ta­tion.

“We wel­come the coro­ner’s adop­tion of our rec­om­men­da­tion for a new sep­a­rate li­cence class for frame steer ve­hi­cles and will write to the Na­tional Trans­port Com­mis­sion on im­ple­ment­ing this rec­om­men­da­tion,” he said.

“We are still ex­am­in­ing as a mat­ter of ur­gency the rec­om­men­da­tions re­lat­ing to speed lim­it­ing and test­ing of each make and model of crane.”


POS­I­TIVE RE­AC­TION: John Leonardi, who lost his wife and son in the fa­tal crash, has wel­comed coro­ner John Hut­ton’s find­ings and rec­om­men­da­tions.

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