Truck driver bailed over SA freeway crash

·2-min read

A Queensland truckie charged with driving while unlicensed and endangering life after a major crash on Adelaide's South Eastern Freeway has been granted bail.

Nine people were hurt when a trailer-towing truck was unable to stop at the base of the freeway on Sunday, colliding with a bus and at least six cars as it careered through an intersection.

Its driver, 60-year-old Ross Phillip Hicks from Forest Glen, was taken to hospital with non-life threatening injuries before he was arrested and charged on Tuesday night.

He faced Adelaide Magistrates Court on Wednesday charged with eight counts of dangerous driving causing harm, endangering life, driving while unlicensed and driving without due care.

Hicks was granted bail and allowed to return to Queensland before his next court appearance in December.

South Australia police are continuing to investigate the crash which has prompted renewed calls for extra safety measures on the freeway.

The Transport Workers Union wants the construction of a new arrester bed near the end of the freeway, a cut in the speed limit for heavy vehicles from 60km/h to 40km/h and compulsory training for drivers on navigating steep descents.

Premier Peter Malinauskas said the charges following the crash were shocking and substantial.

At the same time, the premier said the government would look at all the options to improve safety on the freeway, including a third arrester bed.

"We know that technology changes and options become more available as time progresses and we should look at these things on a periodic basis," he said.

The base of the freeway, where Adelaide Hills commuters, trucks and people driving to the city from the eastern states converge, has been the scene of several serious crashes and near misses in recent years.

In one of the worst incidents, two people were killed in 2014 when a sewage truck had a major brake failure and crashed into two stationary cars.

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