We have to commend the people at Transport for NSW for finally tackling a long standing problem with the announcement of a pilot scheme of fining tourists parking in allotted truck parking places. This has only been a problem for time immemorial, but at least someone has woken up to the issue.
Of course, the proof of the pudding will be in the eating and how this plays out will depend on the actions of the authorities in backing up this decision. If they just put up a few more signs outlining the potential fines (and we haven’t been informed at what level the fines will be set), then there is going to be virtually zero impact on a growing problem.
That growing problem is not going away anytime soon. The dearth of anywhere to park is a continuing nightmare for our truckies. Just drive around the backstreets near industrial areas and count the number of trucks parked awkwardly, just trying to find a little peace.
The massive growth planned for our cities does not include a plan for extra parking for all of the trucks which will be powering that growth, moving goods in and out of the area. Trucks park in totally inappropriate spots with no facilities and far away from anywhere to get a decent feed.
Meanwhile the major highways between our capital cities are being developed and improved, albeit slowly. Every time a new piece of road goes in the number of parking spaces for trucks decrease. The road builders might try and match the number of formal parking spaces there were on the old road, but all of the other ‘informal’ spaces which truckies have discovered over the years immediately disappear.
Then we get back to the inadequate parking spaces which are provided being taken over by the camping and caravanning community, as highlighted by this video.
The owners of the caravans etc, which are clogging up the parking bays are acting in an inconsiderate and dangerous manner, completely unaware of the consequences of their actions. Of course, there are responsible members of this community who are members of associations and try to act responsibly.
The majority of the offenders are unaware of any problems, apart from the fact they are being woken from their slumber by yet another B-double crawling by, vainly trying to find a place to pull up for seven hours rest.
Don’t worry, the federal government are doing their best. The Australian Government’s Road Safety Awareness and Enablers Fund has announced how it is going to distribute its $3.3 million funding over the next four years.
The Campervan and Motorhome Club of Australia will be given $1 million, that’s $250,000 a year to drive safety awareness programs for drivers of recreational vehicles, such as caravans, campervans and motorhomes, on how to interact with road users.
Two questions come to mind. How much of that million will be spent on the issue of using up truck parking bays? And, who’s going to talk to the vast majority who are not members of the club, and, at the same time, the heart of the problem?