Friday, August 11, 2017

Driver Faces Charges after Freight Train hits Truck Full of Candy

The World's Biggest Pinata?
Shipping News Feature
US – A truck driver is facing a citation after he got his semi-truck stuck on a railroad crossing in the City of Locust Grove, Georgia yesterday which subsequently got hit by a freight train. Fortunately no one was hurt in the incident but what has caught the attention of the American media is a passing motorist's video of the incident which shows the train ploughing into the trailer and spraying its load of soft mints and candy across the tracks.

Spectacular as this is, it is once again raising an issue that is a problem for truck drivers across the world – attempting to drive routes that cannot take their vehicles. Many of these incidents are caused by satellite navigation devices with incorrect display data which has seen trucks attempting to drive along riverbeds or down miniscule country lanes. In this case the local Police state that the driver simply ignored clear warning signs that a vehicle of such size could not cross the tracks.

Local residents told reporters that HGVs getting stuck at the crossing was a monthly occurrence and that they were concerned that another, potentially fatal event was inevitable. The fact that the load was a safe product (and has a certain comedic value) and was not a load of noxious chemicals should be considered a lucky escape.

The Handy Shipping Guide has covered efforts in other parts of the world to improve driver training to help reduce casualties caused by freight vehicles, both to members of the industry and the public, but with so many opportunities for a single missed sign or momentary lapse of concentration it is important for the logistics industry to make sure that it never misses an opportunity to improve on standards.

Many believe that a steady evolution into more autonomous control on vehicles will help reduce such incidents but, as our recent article showed, this is a long way off. The current trend is for ever more regulations to control the activities of road haulage operators as we are seeing in the UK. And, if there is one thing most people in the global freight industry don’t want, it’s more regulation if that can be avoided.