Bridgestone and the Australian Trucking Association have honoured Greg Camilleri, truck driver for Region Peak, as the latest recipient of the Bridgestone Bandag Highway Guardian award.
The Bridgestone Bandag Highway Guardian award honours the great community service performed by professional truck drivers who go above and beyond the call of duty to assist those around them during the course of their normal work.
In November last year, Greg was driving an unloaded B-Double on the Princes Freeway in Melbourne, when a driver lost control of their car in front of him. Footage from Greg’s dashcam shows the car wildly swerving across four lanes of traffic, before overcorrecting and swerving back across all the lanes to crash into the concrete Freeway barrier.
The force of the crash bounced the car back across one lane, coming to a stop right in front of Greg’s truck.
Greg was able to react swiftly to the situation, bringing his unloaded B-Double to a halt right in front of the car. He then jumped out of his vehicle to check on the car’s occupants, helping them to safety at the side of the road and double checking that a baby capsule in the car was empty.
“The Bridgestone Bandag Highway Guardian Award recognises truck drivers who go out of their way to help others and make the road a safer place to be,” Andrew Moffatt, Managing Director of Bridgestone Australia and New Zealand said.
“Greg’s quick reaction to the situation prevented what would have been a very serious incident. This award is about acknowledging when truck drivers act with outstanding consideration for the wellbeing of others on the road and our newest Bridgestone Bandag Highway Guardian inductee did just that.”
Greg said he credited the good outcome to the fact that he had left plenty of distance between his truck and the next car in front.
“It happened really quickly. I jumped straight out to check everyone was OK, though my heart just dropped when I saw the baby seat. But everyone got out okay, and that’s a good result,” Greg said.
“It just shows that people need to be patient and leave plenty of space on the road. If you do that, then hopefully other drivers will also do the same.
“I believe there are heaps of other truckies out there who do exactly the same thing out on the road – they just don’t have a dashcam recording it!”
ATA Chair Noelene Watson said the incident showed the importance of safe driving behaviours and being alert on the road.
“Greg has acted as the perfect example of a professional truck driver - he knew his load, left plenty of space to react to changing conditions, and actively watched out for those on the road around him. After the accident he was the first on the scene, checking to make sure those involved were alright,” Mrs Watson said.
“Because of his foresight, what could have been a terrible tragedy ended up being just a bad scare for the driver and those in the car. Professional driving behaviours like those shown by Greg really do save lives in these situations.
“Greg showed quick thinking, professionalism, and compassion in the way he responded to this split-second situation on the road.
Greg was presented with his award at the 2015 Technical and Maintenance Conference on October 27.