Sunday 29th January saw the seventh annual Kamo Touch a Truck held at Hurupaki School. The event is a fundraiser for Ngunguru and Kamo volunteer fire brigades. Bike Northland teamed up with Northland Road Safety to set up a Blind Zone demonstration. Members of the public were encouraged to sit in the driver’s seat and see how many bikes, cones, or balloons they could see positioned around the front and sides of the truck. Over 230 children and adults climbed up into the cab of the Mainfreight Freightliner Argosy truck. Many were surprised at how little the driver could see, especially directly in front of the truck.
The purpose of the demonstration is to improve people’s understanding of heavy vehicle blind zones, and potentially change their behaviour when riding a bike near heavy vehicles. By sitting in the driver’s seat people see where they are most vulnerable when cycling near trucks. The experience generates valuable conversations with whanau about how to stay safe when cycling on the road. The demonstration was developed by ‘Share the Road Campaign’ and it is hoped that the ensuing conversations will increase people’s understanding of the following key messages:
- Position yourself so heavy vehicle drivers can see you
- Make eye contact with the driver, smile, and wave
- Do not pass a heavy vehicle on the left-hand side
Several truck drivers commented on how great it was to see this demonstrated and the event. Plans are already starting on how we can make it better next year. Further information about the Share the Road Campaign can be found on the website.
A huge thank you to Mainfreight and truck driver Zachery for giving us the use of their truck for the day.