Truck driver avoids jail after fatal Frankford Highway crash

A truck driver has avoided jail after killing a man when his vehicle jackknifed and slammed into a motorhome on the Frankford Highway.

Phillip Allan Woodforde, 51, was negligent “to a very considerable degree” and failed on January 28 this year to drive to wet conditions on the road before his truck jackknifed, magistrate Simon Brown said when sentencing the truckie on Friday.

“Essentially Mr Woodforde, you drove too fast on the day,” he said at the Magistrates Court in Launceston. 

“There’s really been no reason advanced as to why you were travelling the speed you were.”

Woodforde received a four-month suspended jail term on a charge of killing Lindsay Forbes Wright by negligent driving, and a count of causing grievous bodily harm to Mr Wright’s wife and passenger Janice Lorraine Wright during the same crash.

Magistrate Brown disqualified Woodforde, of Bridgenorth, from driving for two years.

He noted the experienced truck driver, who pleaded guilty, was genuinely remorseful and showed insight into the consequences of his driving. 

The Wrights' Jayco motorhome following the crash involving Phillip Allan Woodforde on the Frankford Highway in January. Picture: Tasmania Police

The Wrights' Jayco motorhome following the crash involving Phillip Allan Woodforde on the Frankford Highway in January. Picture: Tasmania Police

The road was wet following storms and hail in the area when Woodforde’s Hino trailer jackknifed around a corner near Frankford and slammed into the driver’s side of the 74-year-old couple’s Jayco motorhome.

Mr Wright was killed instantly, and after seeing what he had done, Woodforde got out of the truck and told Mrs Wright her husband had died.

Mr and Mrs Wright were holidaying in Tasmania.

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