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Coles rejects thrust of safety protest at headquarters
Company says it has its own code as TWU urges it to sign up to Safe Practices charter
Truck drivers and families affected by heavy vehicle road trauma picketed the headquarters of Coles this morning, demanding the retailer sign up to a transport industry safety charter.
The Transport Workers Union (TWU)-organised event involved around 100 people at the Coles head office in the Melbourne suburb of Hawthorn.
The group presented "shopping trolleys of evidence" – printed coroners’ reports and witness statements – to the retailer’s management, before TWU national secretary Tony Sheldon demanded more accountability on its transport contracts.
"By cutting their transport costs they are ultimately responsible for practices which see drivers under pressure," he says. "Coles: your contracts are killing people."
The TWU is urging Coles to sign up to its Safe Practices charter for the retail sector.
Coles major competitor Woolworths has not signed up either but is "engaging" with the union over the charter terms.
Coles accepted the provided documents, but says the TWU’s "baseless, inaccurate, and offensive" claims were more about increasing membership than improving road safety.
"Coles takes the safety of drivers and other road users very seriously," a company spokesperson says.
"Coles is a signatory to the voluntary Retail Logistics Supply Chain Code of Conduct, which sets out minimum standards of operational behaviour, and Coles ensures its suppliers and contractors are aware of and understand the code."
Hamelex White unveils VersaBolt tipper trailer
New modular trailer from MaxiTrans subsidiary reduces production and repair time
MaxiTrans subsidiary Hamelex White has unveiled its new tipper trailer range, the VersaBolt, with a modular construction and two-way tailgate.
The trailer was recognised by Brisbane Truck Show Awards judges as 2015 Trailer of Show.
Showing off a PBS pre-approved 4-axle dog model at the show last week, MaxiTrans’ general manager of tippers Craig Wallace says the new range were designed, after consultation with customers, to provide versatility and faster delivery times.
"The VersaBolt name is derived from the words ‘versatile’ and ‘bolted’," Wallace says at the show.
"The idea behind it is to give us the flexibility and versatility to be able to assemble in multiple locations around Australia."
"We have three manufacturing sites and we have four key dealerships.
"The idea was that we could flat-pack it, modular, and send it to the dealerships, and then they can put it together.
"From the assembly perspective, a tub, like [the 4 axle dog], you can actually put it together in a very short period of time, about half a day."
"Compare that to the old process of welding.
"Welding a tub, like this, will take about a day-and-a-half to two days to do."
The speed of production comes from the ability to select the right flat-packed parts for the build.
The floor, wall, tub base, front wall, rear frame and mudguards are then bolted together in-house and, according to the company, on the road in a matter of weeks.
The bolted construction allows MaxiTrans to replace or repair parts individually, in an effort to reduce down time.
At present, dog trailers and rigid bodies are available but MaxiTrans says semi-tippers and aluminium options will be on offer in the near future.
Hinges on the trailer have been hidden below the top rail, allowing for its tarp to slide without hindrance, and the integrated two-way tailgate can switch between side or top-hinged.
"By engineering hinges beneath the top rail, the tarp can move smoothly all the way to the back of the trailer without obstruction," Wallace says.
"While the two-way tailgate enhances the VersaBolt’s versatility and possesses an added safety benefit in that it can be operated from a secure position beside the trailer."
MaxiTrans says it has designed a mechanism in the tail post to allow operators to adjust the alignment of the heavy rear-end of the trailer and has also prototyped a releasable ladder that swings down across the back of the trailer to provide access to the trailers contents when the tailgate is closed.
Fuel tax credits for heavy vehicles – are you claiming your full entitlements?
Do you operate a sideloader or a vehicle that uses fuel to power a refrigeration unit or other equipment? You may be entitled to more fuel tax credits than you think.
Fuel tax credits and road user charges
The ‘fuel tax credit’ (FTC) is generally 38.9 cents per litre. However, to the extent that you acquire, manufacture or import taxable fuel to use in a heavy vehicle, for travelling on a public road, your FTC is reduced by the ‘road user charge’ (RUC) (26.14 cents per litre). The result of the RUC applying is that you are only entitled to a partial FTC of 12.76 cents per litre in respect of that fuel.
In Linfox Australia Pty Ltd v Commissioner of Taxation  AATA 517 the Administrative Appeals Tribunal considered the meaning of ‘fuel to use, in a vehicle, for travelling on a public road’.
The case restricted the meaning of the phrase, and under the more restrictive interpretation, less fuel may be subject to the RUC, resulting in greater entitlements to fuel tax credits.
Meaning of ‘fuel to use, in a vehicle, for travelling on a public road’
Linfox used refrigerated trailers to transport perishable goods that were required to be kept at specified temperatures. The fuel used to power the refrigeration units was kept in a separate tank to the fuel that was supplied to the engine of the vehicle. The Tribunal held that despite the fact that the trailer carrying the refrigeration unit was travelling on the road, the fuel used to power it was not used ‘for travelling on a public road’.
The Commissioner acknowledged in his Decision Impact Statement that the Tribunal’s reasoning revised the position for fuel used to power auxiliary equipment not connected with travelling on the public road. The Commissioner’s position is as follows.
This revision will impact the heavy trucking, cement manufacturing, and coach and bus industries … Specifically, fuel used to operate any apparatus or piece of machinery on a vehicle that is not for the purpose of travelling is no longer considered to be ‘fuel used in a vehicle, for travelling’. Some examples of machinery of this nature are the hydraulic arm lift of a garbage collection vehicle, the mixing bowl of a cement truck, the refrigeration unit on a perishables transportation truck and air-conditioning units of commercial buses and coaches.
This analysis would extend to sideloaders and other heavy vehicles using fuel to power equipment not used for travelling. The Commissioner’s position suggests that he will accept the RUC does not apply to the fuel used to power and operate the sideloader’s lifting arms since the arms are auxiliary equipment.
What happens if all of the fuel is in the same tank?
The Commissioner acknowledges that the RUC is only imposed to the extent that the fuel is used for travelling on a public road. This is the case regardless of whether the fuel is kept in different tanks, like in Linfox, or in the same tank.
Where fuel is kept in the same tank, a ‘fair and reasonable’ apportionment must be made.
Beware: time limits
There are strict time limits on claiming unclaimed FTC. You cannot claim a FTC after four years from the day on which you were required to give the Commissioner a tax return to which the FTC is attributed.
Another successful Brisbane Truck Show
ANOTHER year for the Brisbane Truck Show has come to a close.
The four action-packed days have given the industry a positive boost heading into the next 12 months.
Brisbane Truck Show Manager Noelene Bradley said the feedback from exhibitors this year had been very positive, in particular the two main industry business days Thursday and Friday.
"All four days featured strong vehicle and product sales and sales lead generation. Reinforcing this, feedback from attendees and exhibitors reflects an overwhelming support for the Brisbane Truck Show once again!" Bradley said.
"Overall attendance for the four days was 33,707 which was very pleasing in these tough economic times;" she added.
Bob Martin President of the CVIAQ announced at the official opening breakfast that the Brisbane Truck Show had signed a new three show contract with the Brisbane Convention and Exhibition Centre (BCEC) to host the show from 2017 to 2021.
Brisbane Truck Show numbers held strong on the people's day Saturday with just under 12,000 visitors turning out to support the industry run event, only marginally down on the record 2013 numbers.
Exhibitors the busy crowds generated quality leads and sales taken throughout the day.
Police kept busy as Operation Austrans begins
Sapol says focus will be on fatigue and disruption of criminal activity
The annual national compliance blitz, Operation Austrans, is on again with state police already busy after 24 hours.
Operation Austrans will target fatigue, speeding, drug use and other driver behaviour issues within the heavy vehicle industry on major highway until June 13.
Much of the early running is being done by South Australia Police (Sapol).
Along with Department of Planning, Transport and Infrastructure and Safework SA personnel, Sapol reports:
Police also detected a 40-year-old Tailem Bend man who blew .152, tested positive for methamphetamine and cannabis, possessed cannabis and was driving his vehicle disqualified.
A 50-year-old Western Australian man driving a B-double was detected positive for methamphetamine and cannabis and a driver of a prime mover had defective brakes.
Operation Austrans runs to June 16.
Traffic Support Branch Inspector Steve Kameniar says illegal activity, speeding and vehicle defects are in the sights of national police this year.
Police will look to "reduce and interrupt opportunities for criminals who utilise the heavy vehicle industry".
"National research shows that heavy trucks and buses make up only three per cent of the vehicles on our roads, but are involved in 18 per cent of all road fatalities and over 200 deaths each year.
"During the 12 months to the end of September 2014, 213 people died from 192 fatal crashes involving heavy trucks or buses," Kameniar says.
"We can't have a situation where drivers and their employers are sacrificing public safety for economic deadlines. We have no sympathy for that as an excuse.
"Fortunately, most drivers and employers are doing the right thing.
"Operation Austrans is about letting the others know that they are also responsible for road safety.
"Police will be on the lookout for fatigued drivers and will take action to prevent those suspected of suffering fatigue from endangering themselves and other road users.
"We remind all drivers that the only way to combat fatigue is to stop and sleep or, better still, arrange work priorities around proper rest periods.
"There is no quick fix for fatigue; using drugs makes the situation more dangerous as drugs interfere with skills vital for safe driving, including perception, judgement and coordination.
"You need all your senses out there on every drive on our very busy roads. The number of new registrations of heavy vehicles is increasing, along with the number of other vehicles."
He notes that between 2009 and 2014, registrations of light rigid trucks increased nationally by 22.5 per cent, heavy rigid trucks six per cent and buses 11.5 per cent.
By comparison, vehicles registered overall across Australia increased 12.5 per cent in 2014.
"Police say road safety is everyone's responsibility, because with so many more of us on the roads, no driver can ever afford to leave their safety to someone else," Kameniar says
Wayne Buckerfield, the general manager investment services at the SA Department of Planning, Transport and Infrastructure (DPTI), says his department will be working closely with police.
"Our regulatory compliance officers, in conjunction with the National Heavy Vehicle Regulator, will be undertaking compliance operations within the heavy vehicle transport industry.
The operation will focus on compliance with the Heavy Vehicle National Law and other relevant road safety legislation, holding all "Responsible Persons" accountable for their actions / inactions in line with the Chain of Responsibility requirements.
"This operation will be a concentrated effort with DPTI officers working closely with Sapol, targeting fatigue, road worthiness, load restraint, dimensions and mass limits.
"All of these are known contributors to heavy vehicle crashes on roads and have a demonstrated detrimental impact to road safety."
Police ramp up drug tests on Vic truckies
A TRUCKIE who tested positive to driving under the influence of cannabis told Victorian police he smoked two bongs before getting behind the wheel.
THAT man was one of four who tested positive to drug driving during a roadside blitz on Tuesday.
And it's just one of the reasons why police will increase drug testing of heavy haulage drivers on Victorian roads over coming months. Detective Inspector Bernie Rankin, head of Victoria Police's transport investigations unit, said Tuesday's results were "disappointing". "What it tells us is that thousands of truck drivers are doing the right thing, but there's a significant percentage that show a blatant disregard for the law in this area," he told AAP on Thursday.
Of the four positive tests, two were found to have cannabis in their systems, and two had other substances.
Det Insp Rankin said some truck drivers used cannabis for recreational use, while others wrongly believed it would help them sleep after using drugs like methamphetamine to keep them awake. Some reputable trucking companies already test drivers, something he says should be commended. "The problem is across the broader driving community, not just truck drivers," he said. "We will increase drug testing as part of our business as usual, this includes heavy haulage drivers, too." Victorian Transport Association CEO Peter Anderson hit out at claims illicit drugs were a greater problem for transport companies than they are for other parts of the community. "VTA members take a zero tolerance approach to substance abuse to drivers," he said in a statement. "The transport industry directly and indirectly employs thousands of workers on and off the road and is therefore a microcosm of contemporary society and its problems, including substance abuse."
Trimble Transport & Logistics unveils fleet management solutions
Trimble Transport & Logistics has launched the new Truck4U and Fleet XPS on-board fleet management units at the Brisbane Truck Show.
As part of the company’s open telematics platform, the fixed Truck4U solution offers real-time fleet management without driver interaction. The unit offers vehicle tracking, panic alerts, accident reconstruction, engine management, automatic trailer identification and multiple sensor support.
The mobile FleetXPS, which connects wirelessly with the Truck4U unit, allows drivers to interact with management and logistical activities. Besides allowing drivers to carry the device outside the cab, the FleetXPS adds a barcode scanner and camera to the mix.
The portable unit also has a series of software extras, boasting messaging, navigation with speed warnings, hands-free phone, electronic logbook, vehicle checks, fatigue management with warnings, and driver scorecards.
The solution can be customised by transport operators to suit long haul, short haul, pick-up and delivery, recurring runs, and subcontractors. According to Trimble Transport & Logisitcs Australia business development manager Tom Debeuele, the unit is one of the most flexible on the market.
"Transport companies can now deploy different types of telematics devices across their fleet to support the work that needs to be done in the field, and they will not only communicate with the same back-office software but also share data with each other," Debeule says.
"All the information that is captured by the different devices is then stored in the cloud and is available in real-time via Trimble’s web applications and services."
Trimble is making the new solution open to operators and drivers via a smartphone app. The Bring Your Own Device approach takes out the FleetXPS, replacing its role with an Android device, which connects with the fitted Truck4U.
"Drivers will now be able to use smartphone and tablet devices to perform tasks, cutting down the time required for reporting and paperwork – as well as establishing a closer link with their businesses," Debeule says.
The new solutions are on show at the Brisbane Convention and Exhibition Centre from today.
Truck catches on fire near service station
A truck on fire on Mount Gravatt-Capalaba Road, Wishart Photo: Nine News Brisbane
EMERGENCY crews have rushed to Brisbane's south after a truck caught fire on a busy road near a service station.
The cab and rear of the truck caught fire on Mount Gravatt-Capalaba road in Wishart, where fire fighters were called just before 10.15am.
The driver escaped with only "bumps and bruises".
Three crews attacked the flames and were able to extinguish the fire just after 10.30am but remained on the scene to keep an eye on things.
A Queensland Ambulance Service spokeswoman said paramedics took the 35-year-old male driver to the Queen Elizabeth II Jubilee Hospital in a stable condition to be treated for minor injuries he suffered getting out of the cab.
Sheep duffing suspected in Boddington in southern WA as farmer loses half his flock of 100 animals
Photo: A Boddington farmer has lost 100 sheep in a suspected theft at the weekend. (ABC Rural: Tara De Landgrafft)
A farmer from Boddington, in southern Western Australia, says he stands to lose up to $10,000, after half of his commercial sheep were presumed stolen at the weekend.
On Friday night, Brad Hardie and his wife, Ton, left their farm, about 22 kilometres from Boddington, to attend a function at the football club in town.
It was not until the next morning they realised half of the 200 sheep ready to be exported in their saleyard had gone missing.
Mr Hardie said the yard was secure and he reported the matter to police.
"Saturday morning when the truck turned up, the truckie started loading them and said there was a few short," he said.
"I said, well that's impossible, there was 200 there.
"We wandered across and yes he only had 100 on the truck, so yes there was 100 missing."
Farmer says rain washed away any sign of would-be thieves
Mr Hardie said rain had washed away any tracks left behind by would-be intruders.
"It was a pretty windy night, it was pretty wild and woolly down here," he said.
"When we noticed there was a 100 missing, we had a good scout around but we couldn't see any sign of tracks.
"They did a pretty bloody good job at it.
"It's impossible for the sheep to get out of the yard, we had the chains tied down.
"Sheep do have a habit of playing around with chains and opening the gate but all the gates were shut and they were wired and there was no sign of outside tracks.
"I said, 'well maybe there was only 100 brought in or maybe the 'stockie' only drafted 100, not 200' but I followed up all leads and it all goes back to 200.
"So it just puts a bit of doubt in your mind yourself but I've double checked and double checked."
Mr Hardie said the sheep were worth about $100-a-head and he would be looking at claiming the loss on insurance.
"We might be able to claim it that way but otherwise you grin and bear it I suppose," he said.
Boddington police investigating the incident said livestock theft was relatively common in the region.
They ask anybody with information about the incident to contact Crime Stoppers.
Farmers reminded to regularly check stock ID
The Department of Agriculture and Food's manager of product integrity, Peter Gray, said as a general rule, farmers should routinely ensure their stock ID information was up-to-date.
"It's important that farmers regularly check the earmark that they're using," he said.
"We often find issues where people are actually incorrectly earmarking their stock.
"So I just remind producers that they need to be earmarking their sheep or their cattle regularly."
WA truck drivers accused of using road train to freight dangerous goods
TWO West Australian men have been accused of illegally using a road train to freight radioactive material through South Australia.
The pair, aged 49 and 65, were stopped at Ceduna on SA’s west coast last October.
Following an investigation by SafeWork SA, police say the men have been reported for failing to have the necessary licences to transport dangerous goods.
They will also allege the size of the load carried, which also included potentially volatile lithium batteries, did not comply with regulations.
Both men will be summonsed to appear in court at a later date and face a maximum fine of $10,000.
The trucking company involved has been reported for two counts of employing an unlicensed driver to transport dangerous goods and will also be summonsed to appear in court at a later date.
The company faces a maximum fine of $250,000.
Red tape reduced for Higher Mass Limit vehicles permits
The NSW Government has taken another step to slash red tape for the heavy vehicle industry opening up to 98 per cent of the state owned road network to Higher Mass Limit (HML) vehicles.
A permit was previously required to operate HML vehicles in NSW but thanks to a recent Declaration released by the National Heavy Vehicle Regulator (NHVR), transport operators no longer need permits to operate eligible vehicles on assessed and approved routes which include some regional and council owned roads.
Minister for Roads, Maritime and Freight Duncan Gay said from 2 April this year a significant number of pre-approved HML routes across the state became accessible under the NSW HML Declaration.
"Removing the requirement to obtain permits and offering a higher degree of access certainty to NSW transport operators will improve efficiency and delivery times for industry," Mr Gay said.
NHVR Chairman Bruce Baird thanked Minister Gay, Roads Maritime Services (RMS) and the industry for their hard work and contribution to this new arrangement.
"Over the past year the NHVR has listened to what our customers want and need. We have made the required changes to our business and results like this speak for themselves. We know that there is still more work to be done, but we now have the right tools to continue delivering outcomes to provide a safer and more productive heavy vehicle industry for the benefit of all," Mr Baird said.
NHVR CEO, Sal Petroccitto, said that through this partnership with the NSW Government, the NHVR has been able to produce a Declaration that applies the same conditions on the same routes
"Since 10 February 2014, the Regulator has issued 425 permits involving one or more NSW Road Managers, 389 of the permits involving Roads and Maritime," Mr Petroccitto said.
For the 219 transport operators with more than 1,166 vehicles enrolled in the NSW Intelligent Access Program, the initiative provides a more transparent and efficient access system. RMS provide maps and lists of approved roads including approved council roads at www.rms.nsw.gov.au/rav-hml-networks.
Kelvin Baxter managing director of Baxter Transport, a major NSW HML permit applicant with up to 30 permits issued since last February said he believes the improved HML process is a step in the right direction.
"By removing the individual HML process, this will shorten our paperwork timeframe by 4-7 days and this is great news," Mr Baxter said.
The Declaration applies to eligible short combinations, B-doubles, Type 1 A-double road trains (including Modern Road Trains), AB-triples, B-triples and Modular B-triples.
Illegal grain haulage practices may incur truck bans, COR prosecutions
The NSW road authority threatens to pursue parties if they encourage overloading.
Interstate grain haulage trucks caught overloading in New South Wales could be banned from the state, while those receiving the loads may face chain of responsibility prosecutions.
The NSW Roads and Maritime Services (RMS) has flagged the possibility of taking drastic action to prevent further incidents of Queensland-based trucks travelling into NSW and loading grain beyond legal mass limits.
RMS general manager of compliance Paul Endycott spoke to Owner//Driver about the steps the department may take in the wake of a compliance operation that uncovered Queensland trucks loading at higher mass limits (HML) in NSW without accreditation.
"If you continue to commit these offences in NSW and you avail yourself of seeking an unfair commercial advantage, I then have to question if you are a fit and proper person to operate heavy vehicles in NSW and we have the power to withdraw your visiting rights," Endycott tells Owner//Driver.
"In other words, you won’t be allowed to come here. If we need to protect the industry and drive this practice out of it, then that is something that they can be subject to."
Referencing the RMS’s prosecution of Scott’s of Mt Gambier, Endycott says NSW will go after a Queensland trucking operator if one of its vehicles breaches load limits in NSW.
"Scott’s of Mt Gambier is a perfect example. If you’re an operator that commits an offence here in NSW – the offence originated in NSW – I will prosecute you in another state, no problem," he says.
Endycott adds that the RMS can also use chain of responsibility law to target grain handling facilities based in Queensland if it can be proven they played a role in an overloading offence committed in NSW.
"If there is evidence of intent to influence a mass breach here in NSW, there’s recklessness in the way it’s handled or there is negligence, they are triggers in relation to the crime and we will prosecute them," he says.
"They need to do a due diligence and find out where the grain is coming from."
The RMS previously used the threat of travel bans against Cootes Transport for the company’s repeated compliance failures following the fatal 2013 Mona Vale crash.
As Owner//Driver reported, Queensland-based trucks were travelling into NSW, loading to HML without proper accreditation and then attempting dodge the state’s on-road camera surveillance network when returning home with their loads.
While Endycott says he believes the RMS has the problem under control, he concedes it may be more widespread than those who have been caught.
"Possibly. A lot of these people are ducking around. What we are looking at is the movements through that network and while they will be popping around and trying to avoid the surveillance that we have out there, we’re very much alerted to that," he says.
But Endycott has warning for those who think they can us certain routes to avoid camera detection: "Try the back way, see how you go."
NSW truck deaths down 20 per cent
The Roads and Maritime Service says there's been a 20 per cent reduction in fatalities involving heavy vehicles in New South Wales.
RMS Director of Safety and Compliance, Peter Wells, says fatalities have dropped from 50 to 32 over a two year period.
From 2012-2014 there's been a 20 per cent average annual decrease in NSW, compared to a national decrease of around 12.2 per cent.
"So there's good news for Australia and in NSW we are doing that bit better than other states."
In 2013, two people were killed by a truck on Sydney's northern beaches at Mona Vale.
The incident saw Melbourne-based trucking company Cootes Transport charged with 67 counts of operating unsafe vehicles.
It sparked changes to transport rules and police also stepped up their patrols of the heavy vehicle industry.
Mr Wells says since then the roads authority is doing a lot of work with distribution centres, supermarkets, fuel companies and industry to prevent future fatalities.
He says people need to be aware of how dangerous heavy vehicles can be and industry wide action is needed to ensure safety for all.
"Where trucks deliver to and from large centres across NSW, that the staff and managers are making sure drivers aren't fatigued, drivers loads aren't going to be dislodged or fall on workers or people on the road," he said.
"Drivers must know how to safely operate their truck and if there's defects that they feel comfortable reporting it to their manager."
The RMS is concerned some large trucking companies are continuing to resist changes to the sector and is urging all stakeholders to be accountable.
Mr Wells says more needs to be done to address dangerous driving in the trucking industry.
"To a certain extent we are very pleased in that there are good trends and results," he said.
"We are frustrated where some of the larger firms aren't taking this seriously enough, to avoid that trouble in the first place, design to be as safe as possible.
"The vast majority are decent people trying to earn a living, they've got as much right to a safe workplace as anyone else."
Truckie charged over Vic cyclist death
A NSW truck driver was on his mobile phone when he hit an elderly cyclist in eastern Victoria late last year, police allege.
A 76-YEAR-OLD Goughs Bay man was riding in Mansfield when he was struck by a truck around 11.15am on November 12.
A 41-year-old man was charged with dangerous driving causing death, drive in a manner dangerous, careless driving, fail to keep a safe distance when overtaking and using a mobile phone while driving. He appeared in the Wangaratta Magistrates Court on Wednesday and was bailed to reappear on July 2.
Australian fatal truck crashes rise, NSW toll holds steady
POLICE have welcomed statistics showing a two-year drop in truck crash-related deaths in New South Wales.
There were 220 people killed in crashes involving heavy vehicles Australia-wide in 2014 - an increase of 34 deaths on 2013.
About 51% were killed in crashes involving articulated trucks such as semi-trailers, 39% died in heavy rigid truck accidents and 9% in buses.
Nationally, only 23 out of every 100,000 registered heavy rigid trucks were involved in fatal crashes last year.
The figure for buses was 17 out of every 100,000.
Acting Assistant Commissioner Stuart Smith said NSW's figures, released by the Bureau of Infrastructure and Transport this week, were better than any other state in the country.
"We know that NSW is doing very well compared to the rest of Australia when it comes to heavy vehicle fatal crashes, even though a large proportion of heavy truck travel comes through our state," he said.
"While there was a national average annual decrease in fatalities from articulated trucks of 12.2% between 2012 and 2014 - there was actually a 20% average annual decrease in these fatalities in NSW over the same period."
NSW's heavy vehicle crash death toll held steady at 32 last year and in 2013 despite the upward country-wide surge.
It was an improvement on 50 deaths in 2012, and 47 in 2011.
"When you consider Census data which shows 676,250 heavy vehicles registered in Australia, which share the road with 16,957,243 other vehicles, many of which travel through NSW, the fatality reductions achieved are significant for not only road users, but also for the transport industry," Acting Assistant Commissioner Smith said.
Already 18 people have died in heavy vehicle crashes on the state's roads this year after less than five months, making the toll worse than the previous two years.
WHO DIES IN A HEAVY VEHICLE CRASH?
Drivers and passengers - 74.2%
Pedestrians - 13.9%
Motorcyclists - 8.1%
Cyclists - 3.1%
* Of the driver and passenger deaths, 73.8% are light vehicle occupants
* Between 1% and 3% of the fatal crashes involve a drink-driving heavy vehicle operator