Truck driver from video says crash changed his life

UPDATE 11AM: It was the day that changed Bruce Bennett's life.

The man who had been driving big rigs for over 20 years was involved in accident that cost him tens of thousands of dollars and led to him deciding to get out of the industry.

Mr Bennett was the driver featured in a video of a truck crash incident near Mt Larcom on the Bruce Highway in 2012 that is making the rounds in cyber space.

He said he posted a video on YouTube, which has now had over 100,000 hits to date, and was 'hijacked' by someone who edited it and then posted it on Facebook.

Mr Bennett said he had posted on YouTube that it was not to be downloaded, but it is not featured there now.

The video was originally shown on Channel 7's Today Tonight program.

Since then, Mr Bennett's fast-thinking fast-actions, which saved not only his life but the life of the other truck driver  (Lloyd Major, according to Today Tonight's report), has been touted as 'an incredible bit of driving'.

People have left comments on the YouTube video, APN's story and APN's newspapers' Facebook pages, with the majority congratulating Mr Bennett's efforts to steer the rig off the road, avoiding motorists, trees and decreasing the impact on both trucks.

"I actually got out of the trucking industry because of that accident," he said.

"I'd had a few close calls before that."

The original video on YoutTube shows a video section of Mr Bennett's face and starts off with him saying, "Shall I stop for a cup of coffee?" Then "No not yet".

A few seconds later "WTF!!!" appears and Mr Bennett is clearly seen turning the steering wheel to swerve off to the left and off the highway.

The edited version did not show the coffee question but did show "Not yet", and later Mr Bennett picking up his log book.

Mr Bennett said he'd had five hours sleep somewhere before Gladstone before the accident.

He was hauling 26 tonnes behind his prime mover, a shipment of cars bound for Cairns.

Mr Bennett said from his recollection of what he was told happened that day, the ute that had stopped in the south-bound lane did not have a working indicator.

He said the driver of the other truck was new to driving rigs.

Mr Bennett said the other truck driver did not have much time to avoid the cars lined up on the Bruce Highway.

While Mr Bennett's and Mr Major's actions that day saved lives, Mr Bennett said it was a turning point for him.

He returned to driving for a while afterwards, but the owner-driver said he lost tens of thousands of dollars in lost revenue (the freight) and income, plus it took months to settle with the insurance companies.

Mr Bennett said he hadn't been 'jittery' while driving after the accident, but he was a bit nervous.

He now lives in Brisbane, and said the trucking industry did not impact his relationships with his family as it did many drivers.

Wednesday: THERE is a video floating around in cyberspace that shows some truck crashes are unavoidable.

The video, titled "Having a Crap day", states it is of a truck versus truck crash on the Bruce Highway near Mt Larcom.

It says the incident occurred on January 16, 2012.

The video was shared by a Central Queensland Facebook page and has attracted 25 comments.



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