A new website geared to helping truck drivers look after their health and wellbeing launched this week.
Developed by OzHelp working closely with truck drivers, their families and researchers, Health in Gear provides online resources, roadside health checks and a support line for owner drivers and family members.
Central to the program is the Truckie Tune Up, a mobile health check starting at select sites across ACT and NSW.
“These Tune Ups provide drivers with an opportunity give their own health the same attention they would give their vehicles, hence the Truckie Tune Up,” said OzHelp CEO, Darren Black.
“Drivers are often on the road for long periods of time so by taking services to them, our team can provide health checks, and referrals as required.
“The health checks are a chance for drivers to have a chat and connect with someone who understands the industry. Follow-ups can be arranged, and ongoing support is available through our 1800 IN GEAR support line.”
OzHelp says truck drivers experience constant time pressures, long shifts, tight deadlines and isolation which makes them susceptible to depression, anxiety and sleeping disorders.
They are also at a higher risk of obesity and developing chronic diseases such as diabetes, mental ill-health and cardiovascular health issues. Nationally, they are the second-highest occupational group at risk of suicide after constructions workers.
The program is funded through the National Heavy Vehicle Regulator’s (NHVR) Heavy Vehicle Safety Initiative (HVSI) and evaluation of the program will be undertaken by OzHelp in collaboration with the University of Wollongong.
Health in Gear is also in the final stages of creating a podcast featuring the stories of Australian truck drivers to promote connection and educate people on some of the key industry issues and challenges.
Contact [email protected] if you would like to get involved.