Truck safety not negotiable

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Police with the assistance of Roads and Maritime Services have issued a driver with defect notices after his truck and trailer were pulled over by police in Orchard Hills during a drink driving operation.

About 10am on Saturday, Traffic & Highway Patrol Officers from Penrith were conducting random breath testing operations Northern Rd at Orchard Hills when a truck and dog trailer was pulled in for a breath test.

The driver, a 28 year old Auburn man was breath tested with a negative result.

Following an initial inspection by police and inspectors from the Roads and Maritime services the truck and trailer along with the driver were escorted to the Roads and Maritime Services Safety Station at Penrith.

A further inspection revealed cracks in the welding of the trailers chassis, as well as the brake booster push rod not being connected to the brakes of the dog trailer.

Roads and Maritime Services Inspectors issued two defects to the driver, and police issued a further four infringement notices for the defects identified, along with lights and other auxiliary issues.

As a result the owner of the truck was given three days to cause repairs to his vehicle, whilst the owner of the dog trailer was given three hours to move the trailer and rectify the defects.

Acting Assistant Commissioner Stuart Smith said that the roadworthiness of the truck and dog trailer combination was simply not good enough.

“With significant amounts of truck and dog trailer movements currently throughout NSW, and more expected in the future, this is a wake up call for the industry,” he said.

“With the significant heavy vehicle crashes that have occurred in recent times, and subsequent Court penalties applied to operators and drivers, those that push the limits and place other road users at risk will face the consequences.”

“The Joint Traffic Taskforce will now assess this matter to determine whether or not there is a need to conduct compliance inspections of trucks and dog trailers operated by this driver and owner of the trailer, and those involved in the Chain of Responsibility.”

Roads and Maritime Services General Manager Compliance Operations, Paul Endycott says most companies operate vehicles safely and legally but some operators do not give maintenance the focus it deserves .

“Truck safety is not negotiable,” he said. 

“The Joint Traffic Taskforce will continue to focus on what in this case is serious non compliance through careless maintenance programs in the heavy vehicle industry for the benefit of road safety across NSW.

“This intercept by police conducting routine random breath testing, coupled with the expertise of the Roads and Maritime Service Heavy Vehicle Inspectors, has effectively prevented this truck and dog trailer combination being involved in either a serious injury or even a fatal crash. The community should take some comfort out of this event, and the potential of further inspections that may follow.”

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