South Australia Police are considering laying negligent manslaughter charges against the owners of a trucking company after one of its drivers was killed in a road crash.
They have also appealed for former employees to come forward although they say they can’t name the company because of investigative and legal reasons.
A 45-year-old truck driver was killed on March 7 after his rig slammed head-on into a road sign in Adelaide’s southern suburbs.
The man’s death has been declared a major crime with a taskforce established to conduct the investigation.
Police say checks so far have revealed brake failure caused the crash.
“Police are examining whether the company may have been involved in the deliberate and systemic failure to comply with vehicle standards,” a statement released on Tuesday said.
“The taskforce will now determine if there is sufficient evidence to lay a charge of negligent manslaughter against the proprietors of the trucking company.
“Other serious criminal offences are also being considered.”
Last week police searched the company’s premises, seizing documents and defecting 11 trucks for a range of mechanical problems.
Serious brake defects were identified in a majority of the trucks.
Investigators have also spoken to several former employees but want others to come forward, especially those with information about the roadworthiness of the company’s vehicles.
Detective chief inspector Greg Hutchins says those who own or are responsible for the maintenance of heavy vehicles are on notice.
“If your failures result in the death of an employee, or an innocent member of the public, we will rigorously investigate and lay a criminal charge wherever possible,” he said.