A SHELLEY grandfather who narrowly escaped a crash with a semi-trailer has backed calls to ban heavy vehicles from Leach Highway.
Ralph Dawson was at the Leach Highway and Karel Avenue intersection when the heavy vehicle ran a red light at high speed.
“For some reason I hesitated prior to crossing so I avoided a collision by the barest of margins, otherwise I would not be here to tell the story,’’ he said.
“I have seen and heard of serious accidents over the years on the Riverton/rossmoyne section of Leach Highway and enough is enough; something needs to be done.”
Mr Dawson said the notoriously congested highway did not need the added worries of semi-trailers, shipping containers and large commercial vehicles.
Main Roads figures show 11.1 per cent of crashes on Leach Highway involved heavy vehicles, compared to the metropolitan average of 5.4 per cent.
“It is apparent that population growth and an increase in goods distribution services at and near the Perth Airport has resulted in a dramatic increase in vehicle traffic,” Mr Dawson said.
“Removing heavy haulage vehicles completely from Leach Highway and South Street, or banning them between 5am and midnight, might be a shortterm solution but they need an alternative route.”
Riverton MLA Mike Nahan wants to ban all freight traffic accessing Fremantle Port from Leach Highway and South Street east of Kwinana Freeway.
“The previous Liberalled government started construction of Roe 8, a dedicated truck route that would have removed a significant number of trucks from Leach Highway and South Street, as well as tens of thousands of cars,’’ he said.
“Despite having cancelled the project over two years ago, the Mcgowan government is yet to provide a credible alternative and the problems on our roads are only worsening.”
Transport Minister Rita Saffioti said the Government was committed to cancelling Roe 8 and funding 18 road projects across the state to ease congestion.
“The Mcgowan government has a plan for moving freight off roads and we have already increased freight on rail from 15 per cent to 23 per cent in just two years,’’ she said.