Blame Finally Laid Over Single-Lane Road Train Crash In WA
The cause of a head-on crash between two road trains in WA has finally been decided by a judge.
The collision between two 50-metre-long, 100-tonne road trains, happened Minnie Bridge along the Great Northern Highway in July 2013.
The firey head-on left three men injured and 20 cattle dead.
One road train, driven by Warwick Jobson, 60, was headed west.
The other, driven by Graeme Davidson, 41, was travelling east, towing more than 200 cattle.
The two experienced road train drivers collided head-on after neither gave way to cross the single-lane, 195-metre bridge over the Fitzroy River, WAtoday reported.
Both men suffered injuries and Mr Jobson and his co-driver, who was asleep at the time, were forced to flee their cab after it burst into flames.
The two companies involved blamed the other for the crash, however Mr Davidson was originally charged with two counts of dangerous driving causing bodily harm, which were dropped in 2015.
Fast-forward to October 2018, District Court of Western Australia Judge Mark Herron ruled both men were at fault, but Mr Jobson was 80 per cent more culpable because he had driven too quickly while approaching the single-lane bridge and didn’t see the cattle truck until the last moment when he was about to cross it.
“Mr Jobson failed to keep a proper lookout because he should have seen the Davidson cattle train as soon as he exited from the bend,” Judge Herron said.
“If he was travelling at a safe speed of 50km/h, Mr Jobson would then have had sufficient time and distance to brake and stop before the bridge to allow Mr Davidson to first cross over the bridge.”
It was found that Mr Jobson had not applied his foot brake until he had travelled about halfway across the bridge, however Mr Davidson was also at fault for misjudging the other road train’s speed.
The judge said the case highlighted the need for each driver to “exercise caution when travelling on a section of a road where visibility of approaching traffic is limited and the road is too narrow to allow each vehicle to safely pass without taking evasive action.”