WA'S Road Safety Commissioner Kim Papalia has called on the Australian
caravan industry to move quickly on manufacturing safety standards.
This follows a horror smash on Indian Ocean Drive in which a Singaporean
tourist died and a caravan disintegrated at Breton Bay.
Former policeman Mr Papalia admitted the crash was caused by human error,
but said one should have died that day.
"I believe this death was due to a lack of industry safety standards for
caravans. This caravan should not have exploded as it did due to the
impact of the crash," he said.
He thought an overhaul of caravan manufacturing and importation standards
was necessary to ensure the safety of all road users in Australia.
"There is a real downfall in terms of safety standards for the Australian
caravan industry and I'm calling on the State Coroner to inquest this
death to establish that there is an issue," Mr Papalia said.
He pointed out that there were currently 46 Australian design rules
applying to the manufacture of caravans in Australia, but none for
imported caravans and those built at private homes.
"We have engaged with the caravan industry who have raised their own
concerns about the safety standards of caravans," Mr Papalia said.
Caravanning in Australia is the largest domestic holiday option for young
families, but there was very limited safety information available on the
vehicle they are buying and putting on the road.
"We now need further engagement to prioritise nation-wide safety standards
for caravans so we can better inform those looking to purchase, import or
manufacture a caravan to a safe standard," Mr Papalia added.
He has also called for a five-star safety rating for caravan
manufacturers, arguing that people should be able to make an informed
choice when buying a caravan.
He suggests that a rating system would be the perfect way to start.