Category one – Injured worker achievement award – return to work
Garry has been a full time interstate truck driver for over 30 years. In December 2013, he was involved in a major truck crash that involved three trucks including his own, which took the lives of the other two drivers. Garry sustained multiple injuries that emergency crews said he was very lucky to have survived. From the incident Garry was left in intensive care for a week with third degree burns to 19 per cent of his body, a smashed nose, several broken ribs, a large laceration across the left side of his head, a shattered left arm and right hand, his left heel almost cut completely off, minor hearing loss and smoke inhalation.
Garry's injuries prevented him from returning to full duties right away as the damage to his left arm prevented him from being able to manage the trucks he was driving and their loads like he could before his injury. Garry's employer was very supportive of his return to work process as it was the first incident the company had faced.
Garry returned to light duties 12 months after the incident. He returned to working small four hour shifts helping other workers load their trucks and driving trucks in and out of the base. Garry officially started back on full duties in March this year however his recovery from his injuries is still an ongoing process.
Gary Hewson beside one of the trucks he drives