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National Heavy Vehicle Regulator: Co-Exist Research Report Caravan industry association of Australia

In March 2018 an online survey was sent to over 3000 caravan and camping consumers seeking their participation in research to analyse usage patterns of caravanners and camping in rest stops where trucks were present.

A total of 554 consumers who met the criteria for the research (‘had used a rest stop within the last twelve months where a truck was present) completed the survey.

This report presents the data from this report to support the development of education and marketing campaigns.

Rest Stop Usage

The age profile of respondents of respondents who had used a rest area was skewed towards the older 'Grey Nomad' crowd.

Looking at the time on average spent by caravan/camping visitors at rest stops shows a third spent less than one hour at the rest stop

However, a quarter spent more than nine hours at the rest stop. When looking at the reason for stopping at the rest stop; 44% said they stopped to sleep overnight.

However, in the majority of cases, the decision to stay the night in a Rest Area was made during the trip, and not pre-planned

A total of 42% of respondents said the most recent Rest Stop they stayed in was in NSW. This matches with domestic caravan/camping visitation, where NSW is the most visited state.

Sign Awareness

Respondents were asked about their awareness of road signs associated with Rest Areas:

To your knowledge, what statement below best describes this road sign?

  1. You are approaching a rest area for Heavy Vehicle Trucks however other motorists may use the rest area however cannot stay overnight.
  2. You are approaching a rest area for Heavy Vehicle Trucks only and other motorists cannot use the rest area unless it is an emergency.
  3. You are approaching a rest area designated for Heavy Vehicle Trucks however other motorists are permitted to stay overnight.

Only 51% of respondents correctly identified that the sign's meaning was: 2. You are approaching a rest area for Heavy Vehicle Trucks only, and other motorists cannot use the rest area unless it is an emergencyis the correct response

To your knowledge, what statement below best describes the above road sign?

  1. You are approaching a rest area where both Heavy Vehicle Truck Drivers and other motorists may stop however cannot stay overnight.
  2. You are approaching a rest area for all motorists except for Heavy Vehicle Truck drivers.
  3. You are approaching a rest area where both Heavy Vehicle Truck drivers and other motorists may stop and stay overnight in.

Only 16% of respondents correctly identified that the answer was: 2) You are approaching a rest area for all motorists except for Heavy Vehicle Truck drivers.

UHF Radio Usage

A total of 71% of respondents indicated that they travel with a UHF Radio when on their trips,

Of those that do travel with a UHF radio, only 23% publicly display their UHF channel on their caravan through a sticker or signage.

The most common channel used was UHF 40 - used by 59% of respondents.

Awareness of Heavy Vehicle Safety Regulations

99% of respondents reported being aware of the need for Heavy Vehicle Truck Drivers to rest to meet regulations under fatigue law. There was also strong knowledge (92%) of the maximum speed limit for Heavy Vehicle Trucks being 100 km/h

However there was less awareness regarding overnight stopping regulations for trucks

Caravan/Trailer Travellers and Issues

Many respondents reported experiencing caravan/vehicle sway when in an overtaking situation with trucks

As well as caravan/trailer sway, 57% of respondents recorded at least one issue that they experienced in a rest area where trucks were present

Future Education Opportunities

This highlights the opportunity there is for education in this space so caravan & camping travellers can be better informed about rest areas

Credits:

Created with images by Capri23auto - "truck commercial vehicle mercedes" • TeroVesalainen - "question mark hand drawn solution" • TeroVesalainen - "question mark hand drawn solution" • 44833 - "road road marking street" • falco - "semi trailers truck road"

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