Centre for Road Safety

All heavy vehicle drivers should wear seatbelts

The NSW Road Safety Strategy 2012-2021 highlights the need to increase heavy vehicle compliance, especially the wearing of seatbelts by heavy vehicle drivers. Our research shows that from 2010-2012, about one third of heavy vehicle drivers killed in single vehicle heavy truck crashes were not wearing an available restraint.

We commissioned Transport and Road Safety (TARS) Research to carry out a report on the use of seatbelts by heavy vehicle drivers.

Heavy vehicle driver seatbelt use (PDF, 987Kb) includes research from Australia, Europe and the US and looks at attitudes towards using seatbelts and workplace policies, practices and strategies on seatbelt use. Seat design and in-vehicle technology, such as seatbelt reminders, were also included in the TARS report. The approach and effectiveness of campaigns directed at heavy vehicle driver seatbelt use were also examined, as well as some observed and self-reported seatbelt use details.

Some of the main findings of the report were:

  • There are some false beliefs that seatbelts reduce driver safety
  • The comfort and design of seatbelts is an issue that can prevent use
  • The threat of enforcement is a strong motivator of seatbelt use. Trucking companies could consider workplace based enforcement to increase wearing rates.
  • Improvements are needed in the promotion of seatbelt use by the heavy vehicle industry