Should all trucks be banned from the right lane on Freeways?

I drive on the M80 ring road everyday (Melbourne), and just about ever day there is an incident on there.

Many of these incidents involve trucks. I am not against trucks or truck drivers. But in my view, most truck drivers I see driving are always swerving between lanes, in the right lane knowing they need to exit the Freeway soon, on their phones, etc.

I know a couple freeways already have the ban in place, and I would love to know the stats on these roads, but I think it should be nationwide. I don't see any reason why a truck needs to be in the right lane of a freeway.

Poll Options

  • 418
    Yes
  • 61
    No

Comments

  • +4 votes

    Let our in-house expert Pegax comment…

    •  

      Fill me in on who Pegax is ? :D

      • +1 vote

        https://www.ozbargain.com.au/user/71361
        He knows a lot more about trucks etc…

        • +46 votes

          All I read is typical running keyboard mashings of butthurt car drivers and their "I'm not a racist, buuuuut…" commentary on trucks.

          As a truck driver, I say, let's ban all idiot car drivers, since it's those arseholes that truck drivers spend most of their day dodging…

          Next thread… "I want my freight yesterday!!! Why won't trucks get there faster…". It's because we are stuck in the left lane behind some Facebook updating, Instagramming, rate, comment and subscribe car driving arsehole…

          • +43 votes

            @pegaxs: If we could ban all idiot drivers. I’d be down for that. You’re obviously a butt hurt truck driver like the ones on Fb who get on the defensive as soon as someone says trucks are bad.

            I don’t think trucks are bad, or the majority of the drivers. It’s the shit ones who do the wrong thing, or drive like they’re in an F1 race

            • +7 votes

              @Danstar:

              all idiot drivers

              Why does the M80 seem to bring out the worst, most aggressive driving out of everyone?? Motorcycles, cars, utes, vans, trucks – everybody is crazy on parts of that road.

              Agree keeping trucks out of right lane would be good. There’s probably 100 lunatic car drivers to each lunatic truck driver but it's truly terrifying seeing a truck cut in and out of lanes in traffic

              • +2 votes

                @nith265: I agree. Been driving on it every single day for 4 years, minus a few weekends.

                Every type of driver is an idiot at some point.

                Most trouble I have had with is trucks and then motorcycles, but the rest come very close. Man, motorcycles do some of the most dangerous things, wow!

                But, I do agree, trucks have it harder, still they should be driving SAFER. Some of the shit I see is absolutely dumbfounding.

                Is it me or does the company Mainfreight hire some great truck drivers? I see them all the time and they drive amazing.

            • +27 votes

              @Danstar: Meh, I don't drive trucks enough to get that butthurt. But I do know that truck drivers are outnumbered 100:1 or more on some roads. So, for every arsehole truck driver, there are a plethora of ignorant arsehole car drivers.

              Another point to make is that all cars should only use the left lane, because a truck has more right to the road considering how much road tax they pay and how much fuel excise they pay each year compared to a car driver.

              I would like to put a bit of perspective on truck driving that I know you will ignore because it doesn't suit your outrage narrative. Trucks use a lot of fuel to start and stop in traffic. Using fuel in a truck is the same as burning money. Starting and stopping in a truck also costs time. Time = money. So, while little soccer mum, Mary-Heather Double-Barrel is all upset that her children Beathany-Tiffany and Riley-Declan may be late for their respective sports practice, it's not really costing her money. Now, if I'm stuck in a left lane behind Hilda Takesallday in her '83 Corolla, then I'm burning fuel and time at a great rate. Eventually, this "wastage" gets passed onto consumers.

              As a truck driver, I like to keep my truck moving, because, unlike a car driver, I have anywhere from 13 to 18 gears to rummage through. Your car "may" have 6 or is more than likely automatic. If my truck is rolling, it means less gear shuffling and momentum is conserved and I'm gaining metres as I move. Remember that time is money as well, so the less time I spend on the road, the less money I burn. And like every car driver, I too also have the right to travel at the speed limit. And if that means that I have to use up the right hand lane to get around a slower driver, I'm going to do just that…

              Another point is that truck drivers are usually really good at helping each other out. Car driver treat trucks with contempt. My right indicator doesn't mean speed up and overtake me. It means "hey, I'm about to move over". Now, If car drivers had more respect, instead of me getting into the right lane to make a right turn 2km down the road, I could have done it at 500m if a car driver would let me in. But I cant. I have to make allowance for the morons that need to speed up to pass me from 20 car lengths back. (And this goes for letting other cars in, not just for trucks.)

              People who make stupid suggestions about what trucks should and should not do on the road have never spent any time in the drivers seat of a truck and had to put up with what car driver behave like around 40+ tonnes of rolling death. Car drivers need to clean up their own back yard and fix their own shit driving before they try and solve problems for other road users.

              For you, the drive is your commute to work or your commute to sports, a weekend away or a trip to the shops. For that truck driver, it's his/her life. It's their job, their livelihood. It's how they earn their way in life. And for every frustrating truck you encounter on your "commute", I can assure you, they have encountered hundreds more arsehole drivers in the last hour than you will for your whole week.

              • +4 votes

                @pegaxs: A lot of trucks are driven by contractors who don’t own the truck. The company they work for own it.

                I encounter plenty off ass hats in the road.m in every type
                Of vehicle. Doesn’t give anyone the excuse to drive like a dick or be inconsiderate or not understand basic road rules (the latter mainly being for car drivers)

                • +1 vote

                  @Danstar:

                  A lot of trucks are driven by contractors who don’t own the truck. The company they work for own it.

                  Irrelevant. Doesn't matter who the truck is owned by, it still has to operate cost effectively. There is more to driving a truck than just putting fuel in it, stomping a pedal and turning a wheel…

                  • -2 votes

                    @pegaxs: I know many contractor truck drivers and sorry to say. That’s all it is to them pushing the pedal and
                    Turning a wheel

              • +20 votes

                @pegaxs:

                truck has more right to the road considering how much road tax they pay and how much fuel excise

                You forgot to mention that trucks generally F*ks up the road more than cars for that matter and not enough to cover the cost of fixing the road.

              • +4 votes

                @pegaxs: In short we should all drive trucks.

              • +13 votes

                @pegaxs:

                Another point to make is that all cars should only use the left lane, because a truck has more right to the road considering how much road tax they pay and how much fuel excise they pay each year compared to a car driver.

                The reason they pay more is because they're pretty much the only vehicle type to damage the road. They're not being persecuted or anything lol.

              •  

                @pegaxs: TLTR: I am a truck drive transporting your goods. I have the highest priority and more rights then you peows.

            • +1 vote

              @Danstar:

              I don’t think trucks are bad, or the majority of the drivers. It’s the shit ones who do the wrong thing, or drive like they’re in an F1 race

              So you want to penalise all the trucks because of the minority?

          • +5 votes

            @pegaxs:

            As a truck driver, I say, let's ban all idiot car drivers, since it's those arseholes that truck drivers spend most of their day dodging…

            I see a lot of cars merging immediately in front of trucks during peak hour. A part of me hopes to one day see them get into an accident and crushed into a pancake. It's like a lighter version of a train. Trucks can't stop as fast as a car or bike. I just don't understand why there are so many dumb fcks who would play chicken with a truck carrying huge slabs of concrete in the trailer.

            • +1 vote

              @Blitzfx: As someone that has driven trucks for a few years it’s ridiculous how many idiots I have almost killed. Was heading up a hill coming out of Perth once and saw a truck struggling to crawl his way up about 1km up from me, decided I will throw my indicator on so I can switch over and maintain momentum in my roughly 40 tonne semi, checked my mirrors and waited for two cars to pass and clear the way, start to change lanes (at this point had the indicators on for 20 or so seconds) at this point as I am already trying to switch lanes,a little mx-5 tried to overtake me mid lane switch. Missed him by a hairs breath, he is lucky that I rechecked my mirrors after I started merging because my rear wheels would have turned his red little convertible into a pancake.

          •  

            @pegaxs: comment of the day!

            • +2 votes

              @happirt: The issue i sometimes see is on a 3 lane road, there are trucks moving slowly whether uphill or carrying a heavy load, on 2 or 3 of the lanes instead of just being behind each other, I guess they feel they can move faster than the other truck/s on the other lanes but they dont and what happens is this causes a lot of slow traffic behind them on the lanes especially when its at a traffic light and they are slow to move off the mark. I get that there is an issue with timing and deliveries and this is an issue with some of the companies and not the drivers. But it is annoying to see multi lanes all being affected when if you are moving slowly you should really only be on the left lane even if that means you are behind another slow moving truck.

          •  

            @pegaxs: Going through the hills of California they had a great solution, 4 lane highway, 2 lanes for slow/trucks, 2 lanes for everyone else. Trucks had their own slow and fast lane, same with cars, worked well

          • +1 vote

            @pegaxs: I agree with @pegaxs. I have a fair few trucking companies as clients and I see their motor claims. People don't seem to realise the room it takes for a truck to brake and turn!!

            • -2 votes

              @imurgod: What are you agreeing with? That trucks should be allowed to rule
              The road cos Of their size?

              •  

                @Danstar: When did either of us say that? Good lord, drama much?

                "🎼Do you want to build a straw man?🎶"

              • +1 vote

                @Danstar: No, not at all.

                I'm saying that I see drivers do very silly things around trucks, not realising what it takes to stop or manoeuvre a vehicle of that size and weight.

                I have never really had any issue with trucks, myself, but then I'm a very courteous driver (and I don't want my awesome car damaged).

                From what I see come across my desk (and we're motor specialists), most times it's not the driver of the truck that causes the issues (except where the load isn't properly covered), it's most often that the other driver did something stupid.

          • +1 vote

            @pegaxs: Truck drivers in Australia are another breed. Never seen a group of people which think they are owed such a sense of entitlement.

            Somehow Europe, Asia, USA ext. they are pretty reasonable.

            •  

              @random101: of course they are… ;)

              It's nice to know that you have interviewed so many truck drivers in these countries and done in-depth studies into their driving habits to back up your analysis.

              Or, you know, just made a wide sweeping, all encompassing statement based on your own anecdotal experience, mixed in with some confirmation bias and outrage narrative.

        • +2 votes

          Every driver makes mistakes, but truck accident typically results in more significant repercussions.
          I’d love for see self-driving trucks sooner than later. A truck driven strictly according to road rules and pre-programmed manoeuvres will reduce variability and allow accident blame to be correctly apportioned.
          Anyway, with population density increase, heavy freight by road can’t scale.

          • +2 votes

            @AlexF: Truck drivers make up their own rules depending on how they are feeling that day. Generally speaking it's a get the f$@k out of my way I'm more important and bigger than you!!

            •  

              @billybob1978: Truck driver: And if I stop, Australia Stops!!
              No one:
              Truck driver: Try do anything about it and I'll threaten to raise your general cost of living!

              News flash truck drivers - Plenty of competition out there, plenty of people that will do your job on much lower rates.

      • +1 vote

        Trucks have to drive to the conditions and maintain collision avoidance space when cars cut in and out in front of them which some might see as lane hopping.

        Agree not all trucks do the right thing but until you have been in their shoes it’s pretty hard to judge.

        My pet hate is those dh’s that drive up your arse when your doing the speed limit insist on tailgating you and try to force you to speed and change lanes. Not suggesting those in the right lane doing 20 below are any better.

        Don’t think we should condone those who want to do 120 in a 100 zone especially on the ring of death. More patience on our roads would be welcome.

  • +11 votes

    trucks also cause slow traffic, especially in stop-start traffic flow.
    there should be some surcharge if they want to drive during peak hour.

    • +10 votes

      Another reason for trucks to keep to the left. When traffic does start to flow again, they're stuck trying to gain speed in the right lane too

      • +11 votes

        In my experience, trucks do keep left - unless there is someone slower in front to overtake.

        • +2 votes

          You must’ve drive much or in peak hour times on free ways ?

        • +1 vote

          Hey! Don't let the truth get in the way of a good outrage narrative @Euph… :D

        • +1 vote

          You're obviously not from around here.

        • +1 vote

          Trucks are almost always in both lanes. Lots of times they're side by side and both go slow, which creates a large gap in front of both that could streamline traffic if trucks kept left. I ride a motorcycle so when I see idiot truckers doing this I lane filter/lane split between them and go on my merry way.

      • -4 votes

        Another option I can think of is that trucks should drive only at nights preferably 9 pm onwards. Let them take up the whole freeway at nights and go as fast or slow as they'd like. Not only would we all receive our packages on time, but the fuel spent on trucks constantly braking/pacing on low gears will be saved which must be a huge amount overall. We could easily halve the fuel consumption and carbon footprint of trucks.

        • +4 votes

          Sorry pal but I'm not working night shift just so you can get home 5 mins quicker. Seriously, use your brain. Not only would the entire transport industry need to work night shift, but the people in factories, building sites, shopping centres etc…

          • -2 votes

            @gtrdude: Neither do people want to be serving lunch to others during lunch break but it is a career choice, you can always get a desk job.

          • +3 votes

            @gtrdude: More people should work later/earlier. Would alleviate some of the traffic, I would rather not work normal hours personally.

            I don't drive a truck, but often see cars cut trucks off and then brake hard because of the cars slowed/stopped ahead. Personally think trucks are usually the more courteous drivers, not always, but mostly.

          • +2 votes

            @gtrdude: @gtrdude Explain what you mean by "the people who'm it will affect and the total cost to society." What cost to society are you talking about? Are you not aware how many people work night shifts already?In fact like I said, if trucks drove at night then the fuel used will go drastically down. Trucks use a lot of fuel and constantly braking and going slow uses even more fuel. When you calculate the carbon footprint of a product, transporting the item is a major contributor because things are transported in trucks. Not only that but during the day when there are no trucks other vehicles will travel faster and accidents that occur due to trucks will also go down drastically thereby helping society. Trucks are difficult to stop and a lot of accidents involve trucks unable to stop in an emergency braking situation.

            My suggestion for night shift will not only reduce carbon footprint by a large amount but saving lives in accidents is a no brainer. I'd even argue that truckers may be in favour of this once they start working nights because of all the benefits, possibly a higher pay for working nights.

            Though I understand that working nights is a not a favourite and truck related carbon footprints can be eliminated by using electric trucks. Tesla ftw.

            •  

              @alikazi: Not very likely that's going to happen.
              One reason is that most construction equipment/materials, most stock that gets transported wholesale, and most hazardous materials get transported by trucks. It's dangerous enough loading/unloading tons of those during the day. What do you reckon would happen if trucks could only drive at night? Not to mention that builders work during the day, and while it is possible to prep for SOME of their stuff to arrive nighttime/early morning, it is not feasible for the majority of these activities.

            • +1 vote

              @alikazi: Ok let me give you the dumbest example I can think of so you can wrap your head around this.

              Let's say that a truck is transporting some construction materials from an engineering business to a high rise construction site in the inner suburbs. These materials will have to be unloaded and directly craned on to the top of the building because there is no space to store on the ground.

              The people in the factory will be working at night, the traffic management crew, the forklift drivers, the crane crew (which would probably be illegal I don't know), the tradesmen, the site supervisors and yours truly. All of us will need to be paid at a much higher rate than we would normally ask.

              Are you starting to get the picture of how this all works now? Can we finally put this to rest or will be punish the dead horse a bit more?

              •  

                @gtrdude: “All trucks should only work at night…”

                “I can’t sleep at night, too many trucks driving around.”

                “Trucks should only be allowed to operate between 10am and 4pm.”

                “Why does my parcel take 3 months to get here??”

                “Trucks should only operate at night and on weekends”

                “Why is postage so expensive?”

                “Trucks should only be allowed to go at 80km/h to make them safe”

                “Why do trucks drive so slow?”

                :D

        • +1 vote

          Also many areas are “residential” along highways and we can’t use our engine brakes without encountering fines, it’s already a pain in the backside for the many truck drivers that do drive during the night.

        • +4 votes

          Lots of cities incl Paris, London Tokyo Seoul all have restriction on trucks based on size or time of day etc.

          I get that a lot of car drivers can be douches but truckies as professional drivers of heavy dangerous vehicles need to be held to a higher standard. Tailgating slower cars on wet roads at high speed is criminally negligent IMO and I see it far too often. (No Im not the slow driver!)

    • +1 vote

      Great idea, then they can pass that surcharge on to the cost of the petrol/food/furniture etc etc they are delivering.

      •  

        it's only peak hour. they avoid it by not going during peak hour.
        overall , the benefit is greater.
        less traffic jam, less time wasted on traffic, less pollution from car, less fuel wasted, more time for people on road.

      • +2 votes

        Everyone loves a good surcharge, we should have a climate change surcharge.

      •  

        There's enough competition out there - it won't touch the consumer.

    •  

      How about we just give the trucks the right lane?

      Moving them to the left just means they are in everyone's way.

      Most truck drivers are professionals and keep the speed up as fast as they can cause they burn money otherwise.

      I've never been stuck behind a truck on the freeway despite commuting every day - Its always some idiot in a car checking facebook, doing their makeup, reading a newspaper, or a motorbike who got clipped lane-splitting etc.

      Also, most trucks are pretty considerate and actually give way on the freeway or let people in.

      I cross a busy intersection every day on the commute and its always either a bus or truck that lets me in.

      I've never been let in by male in a sports car.

      Let's ban male sports cars from morning commute times, as they are inconsiderate drivers.

      • +1 vote

        Give way on a free way? Who’s giving way where now ?

      •  

        Many truck drivers (not all) let people in because we prefer to have you where we can see you, pain in the butt when a car jumps in front of you and cuts your breaking distance in half. Truck brakes are useless when we need to stop fast so we relie on engine breaking to assist them when we want to stop or slow down thus we need distance.

      •  

        Yep. I agree. I also always let truck drivers in when they need to change lanes and give them a flash with the headlights when they are clear to cross over.

        It's the morons in sports utilities, hyundai i30s, VW golfs that just don't give way and keep on cutting people off.

    • +1 vote

      Trucks already have a pseudo surcharge for peak hour driving; their delay costs are a lot higher than for a passenger vehicle. They also already respond to that by driving at Super weird hours. I don't think it needs to be any more dramatic.

  • +7 votes

    So you ban trucks on right lane, or make them travel at off peak. Which will make your transportation cost more expensive, so now you going to be happy with the increase cost on delivery for goods that you buy due to Ozb?

    • +13 votes

      Most goods should be on rail, using trucks to move goods to and from rail heads.Safer for other road users. Environmentally, supposedly better.

      • +7 votes

        There are some goods already on rail but our rail system is crap/SLOW/unreliable. :(

        • +12 votes

          That's because it has been deliberately run down. If you look at costings, there is a reason mining operations want access to rail networks.

          • +4 votes

            @Rolts: Mining operations use rail because it all goes to one spot, trucking for mining would be like using Taxi's to move peak hour commuters.

            Trucks deliver all over the place and from all over the place, do we make everything next to a train line? I dont think so

            Rail isn't un-reliable either its just designed for hub to hub travel, not door to door / business to business

            • +4 votes

              @RockyRaccoon: Most semis are not delivering door to door either, many operate on a hub system. Getting freight onto rail for interstate deliveries would reduce heavy traffic on highways, reduce wear and tear on the roads and ultimately be safer for other road users. (Please note, I'm not accusing truck drivers of being unsafe, but in a collision between a hatchback/sedan and a heavy vehicle, the results are usually heavy weighted against the smaller vehicle regardless of fault.

              •  

                @Rolts: Valid points, but op is talking about ALL trucks , that would to me mean delivery type trucks etc

                semis would only be a small proportion of those, and even then are using “Hubs” that are not near railway stations

      • +1 vote

        I cant wait to see a big ass long train turn into woolies, coles, ALDI and IGA

      •  

        In the year 2000, there were 2400ish trucks on any given weekday (and 1200ish on weekends) traveling between Sydney and Melbourne. The longest monster freight trains in the US replaced about 600 trucks and were 5.5km long. I dont think think we will be replacing trucks with trains, not because of infrastructure, but because its not in any way shape or form a feasible option.

    •  

      How would banning trucks from the right lane increase transport costs?

      • +1 vote

        I'm not a truck expert but everything has a flown on effect; Imagine you own a trucking company, you got 10 trucks, you can transport 300 load per month. Now, due to new legislation, you not allowed to use the right lane, which make your traveling time slower, as a result you need to get more trucks to transport same load within same time frame. So what going to happen to the distribution cost?

        • +1 vote

          I can safely assume, stopping trucks from using the right lane won't affect their travel times much, if at all.

          Imagine a truck using a right lane, causing an accident and not only halting their load from being delivered, but stopping a shit load of other loads being delivered?

          /load

          lol

          • +3 votes

            @Danstar: You safely assume wrong.

            Imagine a truck has to sit behind a learner driver until the learner leaves the road.

            Imagine the truck has to sit behind an old car with a caravan under the speed limit.

            Imagine the truck has to now drive slowly behind someone trying to cut fuel consumption by travelling under the speed limit.

            Slower traffic for everyone.

            • -8 votes

              @Euphemistic: Imagine a truck swerving between lanes cos they want to travel at 110 instead of 90 for a few kms?

              And don’t give me trucks are speed limited. Maybe some are, the majority aren’t.

              As I’ve said before too, imagine a truck merging in the right to avoid some traffic. Then traffic stops ahead, now we have the “over taking” lane blocked by a truck trying to get back up to 100kms ph

              • +2 votes

                @Danstar:

                And don’t give me trucks are speed limited. Maybe some are, the majority aren’t.

                This old chestnut… Have you ever been near a truck in your life? All trucks over a certain size (12t GVM for memory) need to be speed limited. They are usually speed limited at the time of engine installation at the truck dealer or at the factory. The fine for driving a truck without a speed limiter or a broken/bypassed speed limiter is about $3,500 for the driver and about $17,000 for the owner/corporation. This doesnt include the speeding fine itself.

                This whole thread so far stands as testament to your gross misunderstanding of trucks and truck drivers and your absolute hypocrisy. You want trucks to just stay in one lane and wait, but their whole job revolves around getting freight to destinations on time, but you wont take a few seconds increase to your non-time critical morning commute.

                • +19 votes

                  @pegaxs: You say you don’t drive trucks (let me guess, mud carters?? Lol) enough to be butt hurt, pegaxs. Well I do, and I’m sick of drivers like you contributing to the bad reputation. The attitude of many drivers (of any vehicle) is utterly appalling, and truckies are far from exempt, there are even more aggressive tantrum throwing ones these days. We do not have more of a “right” to the road or to be safe or to get our job done. You clearly haven’t been around trucks long, or you’re just full of it, because speed limiters can be tampered with, or you haven’t heard of angel gear?? Speeding is not something I see trucks do a lot, the issue is mostly tailgating and changing lanes onto others, running red lights because you lot find it too much effort to go through gears.
                  To everybody else: please don’t think he speaks for every one of us with his views and bad attitude.

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