n encouraging findings for the industry, fatal crashes involving heavy trucks have decreased by 12 per cent in the 12 months to March, the latest Bureau of Infrastructure, Transport and Regional Economics (BITRE) statistics show.
There were 147 heavy fatal crashes compared to 167 with the previous corresponding period, representing the first time in the past 10 years that the figure has dropped below 150.
That figure was slightly tempered by a recent spike towards the end of the March 2019 quarter that halted the overall downwards trend, especially in the articulated truck sector though it affected both.
However, the average remains a solid 4.1 per cent decrease per year over the three years to March 2019.
Fatal crashes involving articulated trucks decreased by 5.6 per cent compared with the corresponding period one year earlier (from 89 to 84 crashes) and decreased by an average of 5.7 per cent per year over the three years to March 2019.
Fatal crashes involving heavy rigid trucks decreased by 20.7 per cent compared with the corresponding period one year earlier (from 87 to 69 crashes) and decreased by an average of 0.6 per cent per year over the three years to March 2019.
New South Wales was the biggest driver in the decrease of articulated truck fatal crashes, nearly halving to 2016 levels (26) following 2017’s spike to 46, keeping the national average around historically low levels.
Western Australia (15 to five), Victoria (17 to 11), and Tasmania (seven to four) led the way for the decrease in fatal crashes involving heavy rigids, with the hope that the curve continues to trend towards 2011’s low after seemingly hitting a ceiling in 2017