A young Riverina truck driver has called for road users to learn more about trucks to increase safety on roads in wake of tragic accidents.
Steven Richardson won the Livestock, Bulk & Rural Carriers Association's Young Driver of the Year award after only two years on the job.
"I am a third generation truckie working for my family's company, Richardson and Sons Haulage, carting bulk commodity grains from Newcastle to Melbourne," he said.
"I have been around it since I was kid and I always wanted to do it.
"I love it because you get to see the scenery, you are your own boss and you are not under any deadline."
Mr Richardson said the hard part can be being away from his family.
"It's also a challenge always keeping an eye on other road users," he said.
"Not a lot of people understand the workings of a truck and how long it can take them to stop. It can be long hours as well."
Recently, there have been multiple truck crashes and incidents in the Riverina and on Thursday, a Wagga man has died in a truck crash on the Hume Highway near Denham Court.
Mr Richardson said it can be a dangerous job and he hopes to see more people learning about how to navigate around trucks safely as one way to help lower the toll.
"A lot of drivers they get their licence and they don't get taught much around trucks," he said.
"They need to learn how to share the road."
Geoff Crouch chairman of the Australian Trucking Association, said the most recent data from the NSW Government Centre for Road Safety shows there has been a decrease in the number of fatal heavy vehicle crashes across the whole state in the last 12 months - including in the Riverina.
"However, any fatal truck crash on our roads is one too many," he said.
"Until we reach a point where there are zero fatalities and injuries on our roads, the ATA will continue to advocate for practical safety solutions."
Mr Crouch said the ATA are calling for a number of measures to continue to bring the rate of crashes down
"We're calling for no-blame safety investigations, more truck rest areas, improved truck driver training and mandating autonomous emergency braking for all new trucks," he said.
"We're also working hard to improve safety across the industry and the Australian community, with our educational Safety Truck initiative that educates young road users, and TruckSafe our world-class safety accreditation system."
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