Provincial safety campaign aims to lessen road carnage

By Greg Fry
October 17, 2017 - 3:26pm

KAMLOOPS — In a bid to cut down on traffic fatalities, the Be Truck Aware Campaign was launched today.

Statistics show while large trucks are involved in fewer than one per cent of all crashes in B.C., they're involved in nearly 20 per cent of fatal crashes.

Across North America, studies have shown that, in car-truck crashes, occupants of the passenger vehicle are at a far greater risk of being killed than the driver of the truck while the majority of fatal car-truck crashes are caused by passenger vehicle drivers.

Additional studies show that in fatal car-truck collisions, two-thirds or more of the incidents are found to be the fault of the passenger vehicle. In addition to that, a fully loaded transport truck travelling at 65 km/h takes 36 per cent longer to brake and stop than a passenger car travelling at the same speed. A fully loaded transport truck travelling at 105 km/h takes 66 per cent longer to brake and stop than a passenger car travelling at the same speed.

With that in mind, the campaign urgers vehicle drivers to:

  • Leave space: Large trucks need extra room to stop and turn.
  • Don't merge too soon: When passing a truck, make sure you can see both its headlights in your rear-view mirror before merging back into the lane.
  • Be visible around trucks: Either slow down or move well ahead of large trucks to stay out of the truck driver's blind spots.
  • Anticipate wide turns: Watch for trucks making wide swings to turn right.

Truck drivers can help by:

Ensuring brakes and tires are in top condition to minimalize stopping distances.

  • Adjust speed and driving in poor weather and road conditions.
  • Stay sharp and focused by getting plenty of rest and eliminating in-cab distractions.
  • Make sure loads are well-balanced and secure to reduce the likelihood of a crash and its impact on others.

The Be Truck Aware Campaign runs through Oct. 31 and is a partnership between RoadSafetyBC, ICBC, WorkSafeBC, the Justice Institute of British Columbia, RCMP, Commercial Vehicle Safety and Enforcement, Teamsters Local 31, the BC Trucking Association and the Truck Safety Council of B.C.

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