A unique worldwide memorial initiative acknowledging the overlooked trauma and danger experienced by truckies and tow truck drivers takes place this Friday 17 August.
By displaying black and white ribbons on your vehicle on 17 August, Johnny Allnyte Day, you can show support and give recognition to the men and women working in the trucking industry
â€œThey are the ones left at accident scenes to pick up the pieces and sadly in Australia itâ€™s not procedure for drivers to receive counselling or trauma debriefing following fatal accidents,â€ said coordinator Lesley Pethebridge-Kontjonis .
On 17 August Ms Pethebridge-Kontjonis is hoping to shine a light on the difficulties faced by truckers, and their wives, husbands, daughters, sons and friends who have to deal with these situations and their aftermath.
Following the death of her husband, John â€˜Johnny Allnyteâ€™ Pethebridge, a 46-year-veteran of the tow-truck industry, Ms Pethebridge established Johnny Allnyte Day â€“ a day to show recognition and respect for those working in the industry and those like Mr Pethebridge, who are sadly no longer with us.
Ms Pethebridge-Kontjonis, whose two brothers were killed in trucking accidents, initially sought support via a Facebook page which now has more than five thousand supporters from all around the world.
Bette Phillips, a UnitingCare counsellor who specialises in work related grief-support said it was crucial that people working in high-stress situations such as the trucking industry had access to adequate support.
â€œThe towing and trucking industry is not an easy life â€“ many drivers are on call twenty-four-seven,â€ Ms Phillips said.
â€œLong hours, on-call-shifts for days at a time and the reality of regularly attending fatal and serious accidents can take its toll on people especially when youâ€™re already in a high-stress workplace.
â€œThis can have serious implications for an individualâ€™s mental health, their relationships with their family and ultimately their ability to do their job safely.
â€œWe rely on truckies and tow truck drivers â€“ there is a real need to support them and appreciate the hard work they do.â€
By displaying black and white ribbons on your vehicle on Johnny Allnyte Day, 17 August, you can show support and give recognition to the men and women working in the trucking industry and those no longer with us.
Media contact, Ben Grundy 92515968, 0421223406.