3rd April 2019 Our roads.

Goodaye all. A big week this week, slow to start and then running all the way till the end. Lots of rain, lets hope my request for a rain dance and the issues of the drought helped it happen. You have to take the credit where you can. I was asked by a couple of clever workmates, when did I get brown truck, as that is how it looks a bit

Our roads now are generally good, but it is the bad bits which do all the damage to us, not so much you in your car, but geez it hits us in trucks. Of course that impact goes through the truck and causes much of the wear and tear and mechanical issues we then get either booked for and or have to pay to fix and maintain. This only decreases safety and increases the cost of transport. That impact then goes back into the road as well and causes further damage. Is this a chicken and egg issue? Did the bad road cause the truck to damage the road? If the road was good, then no impact into the driver, the truck, or the road.

Can we have perfect roads then that will not cause any of these problems? No! We have a large country with vast distances in between and a small population and don’t have the perfect land everywhere for roads. We have good land in some places for crops and we have good land for minerals, but we also have land useless for either and then we have roads and they rely on local land for the base and materials to use. They are only as good as they are built, would you agree?

Yes we can build them cheap and spend a fortune maintaining them, ignoring the damage and costs to road transport and I am not complaining about my job. What I am saying is if you live outside of a capital city, you need trucks to deliver things to you and to take crops and minerals away, if only to a rail head etc and if you don’t live along a railway line, you need a truck to get those things to move.
So do you agree that if we build and maintain roads to the highest standard, then that must be better than building them cheap, doing sub standard repairs and letting the trucks and drivers cop the impacts and the transport companies cop the maintenance costs and the consumer, cops a higher fee too.

Do you know of the Pareto Principle, the 80/20 rule. My view is that if you fix the worst 20% of road deformities, failures and impacts, you would then remove 80% of the damage and possible contribution to crashes, caused by such failures. This of course includes potholes and all sorts of road issues. Having safer roads is good for all road users and with it being my workplace as well, better and safer for all truckies too.

So how do we do that? We must help by reporting such issues to the authorities as they will not always know or see such thing thousands of kilometres away. They then must have the funds to do the repairs and must act in reasonable time. If we had a National Road Standard, then we could more likely guarantee better roads and improved safety and les cost to all. But what are my chances of getting such a thing up? Perhaps not so good, but will that stop me from pushing? No way. Till next week, Safe Travelling, Rod Hannifey.

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