TRUCK drivers and supporters held a memorial in Sydney today to highlight the increased number of deaths from truck crashes this year.
The event was attended by Federal Labor Employment spokesman Brendan O'Connor who condemned the Government over its inaction on the carnage.
Drivers stood with Christmas trees at Town Hall, representing the individuals who died in truck crashes during the Christmas period last year.
TWU National Secretary Tony Sheldon said each tree represented an individual who would be absent at the table this Christmas.
"It represents a family torn apart and a community left devestated," he said.
"This increase in deaths is being caused by wealthy retailers pressurising transport operators and drivers to take safety risks to deliver their goods at lower costs. This increase in deaths is being willfully ignored by the Federal Government."
Driver John Hanley said pressure on drivers made trucking a highly dangerous industry.
"The deadlines are unrealistic and the pressure is so great that drivers are forced to take risks. I have friends who have been to multiple funerals of drivers killed," he said.
Drivers are calling on the Federal Government to put in place a watchdog to ensure wealthy retailers are held accountable for low cost contracts and safety risks in their supply chain.