Ahead of the busy holiday period, the Caravan Industry Association of Australia tells us it’s working hard to promote the road safety message to holidaymakers, with a targeted campaign focusing on topics such as sharing the road with trucks, and the appropriate use of rest stops – including truck rest areas. But is the message getting across?
The peak national body for the caravanning and camping industry in Australia has developed a suite of free info in partnership with other state caravan associations, professional service providers, as well as trucking bodies like the National Heavy Vehicle Regulator and the Queensland Trucking Association.
This follows a recent crackdown in Queensland, with new laws now in place around heavy vehicle rest area use by other motorists, including caravanners – a move that was welcomed by many in the industry. Among these was NatRoad, which also called on all state and territory governments to follow Queensland’s lead, to help ensure heavy vehicle rest areas are available to the truckies that need them.
“Safety is always important but with an expected surge in travel this summer with over 741,000 registered RVs in Australia and additional interest from ‘first timers’ due to COVID preventing international holidaying, now is a crucial time to put this messaging front of mind,” said Keelan Howard, GM of Marketing & Communications, Caravan Industry Association of Australia.
The Association’s CEO, Stuart Lamont, agreed. “We can expect a huge uplift in the number of people redirecting their international and cruise intentions and hitting the open road – with or without a caravan in tow.
“We have over 400,000 active consumers on our database alone which are regularly being fed safety messages, headlined by the current Road Safety campaign – Caravan RV Road Safety Month where for 30 days leading into the summer break, we will be providing a safety message a day ranging from fatigue management and proper weight loading, through to road etiquette and tyre maintenance.”
Spreading the message about trucks and caravans safely sharing the road is undoubtedly important – so how well is this working? “This is something which needs constant work, from both sides of the argument,” said Lamont.
“Importantly we are keen for consumers to understand how best to communicate with a truck which is close by on the road, but also to respect the designated fatigue management areas which are allocated for truckies’ exclusive use. Caravan Industry Association of Australia is working hard through a Co-Exist program funded by the Federal Government to have a better understanding of rest area signage, and to take away unnecessary angst between truck drivers and caravanners.”
The Co-Exist website can be found at coexist.org.au.