Over­size frus­tra­tion and dan­ger

Driv­ers fac­ing fines for ig­nor­ing over­sized load warn­ings

Owner Driver - - The Goods -

EX­PE­RI­ENCED LO­CAL and in­ter­state pi­lot driver Chris­tine Thiel says mo­torists, as well as some truck driv­ers, are ne­glect­ing to give way to over-di­men­sional loads.

Thiel says fail­ing to com­ply with po­lice es­cort di­rec­tions, when con­fronted by an over­size load, is an of­fence which can in­cur con­sid­er­able fines.

“Truck driv­ers and other mo­torists who ig­nore po­lice and es­cort in­struc­tions place them­selves and oth­ers at risk of a tragic in­ci­dent,” she says. “For­tu­nately it is the mi­nor­ity of truck driv­ers trav­el­ling in the op­po­site di­rec­tion to­ward the over­size load, which are caus­ing the con­cern.

“Gen­er­ally most mo­torists are very con­sid­er­ate and com­ply with in­struc­tions, to en­sure the safe pas­sage of the con­voy.”

Thiel, based in South Aus­tralia, says pi­lot ve­hi­cle driv­ers warn traf­fic of the ap­proach­ing over­size load and do all they can to en­sure the road ahead is clear to make a safe way for the large load. They also do all they can to con­vince the road train driv­ers and other mo­torists to slow down and move over, to en­sure the safety of all ve­hi­cles in the vicin­ity of the move­ment.

“There are many move­ments every week out of Port Ade­laide to Sil­ver­ton wind farm. As many as six long, large loads travel the Hor­rocks and Bar­rier High­ways every day,” Thiel con­tin­ues.

“Ig­nor­ing the pi­lot driver’s warn­ing, and fail­ing to com­ply with po­lice in­struc­tions, is an of­fence and can in­cur a fine of more than $600.”

Thiel is aware that the South Aus­tralian and New South Wales po­lice of­fi­cers es­cort­ing th­ese con­voys are in­tent on tak­ing ac­tion and im­pos­ing in­fringe­ment no­tices when th­ese in­ci­dents oc­cur.

“There are hun­dreds of over­size move­ments all across Aus­tralia every day,” she says. “Th­ese loads can vary from 3.5 me­tres to more than eight me­tres. The loads can be wide, high, long and heavy.

“Ev­ery­one in­volved in the moves have every in­ten­tion of safely re­turn­ing home to their fam­i­lies.”

Ac­cord­ing to Thiel, pi­lot driv­ers are say­ing it’s dis­ap­point­ing when they are asked by truck driv­ers about the size of the load.

“It means their ra­dio has been turned down and they haven’t heard any of the calls by the ap­proach­ing con­voy,” Thiel says.

“Us­ing the UHF ra­dio when in the vicin­ity of over­size loads, can help the driv­ers de­ter­mine the lo­ca­tion and di­men­sion of the ap­proach­ing load. The driv­ers need to take full re­spon­si­bil­ity for their ac­tions, in­clud­ing giv­ing way to over­size loads.”

Pi­lot es­corts are be­com­ing frus­trated with mo­torists ig­nor­ing over-di­men­sional load warn­ings

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