ALRTA News – 12 April 2019








Byrne Trailers are once again exhibiting at the 2019 Brisbane Truck Show. The BYRNE exhibit is located in HALL1- Stand 48 – Alongside Maxitrans.

Our exhibits include STAINLESS STEEL Livestock Trailers, and the newly designed Flat- sided Full Aluminium Walking Floor Trailers.

We look forward to meeting all members & guests of The ALRTA


Prime Minister Morrison has called the Federal Election for Saturday, 18 May 2019.

To obtain an absolute majority (and govern without relying on the support of cross-bench members), a party must win 76 seats in the House of Representatives.  Going into the election, the Coalition has 74 and Labor 69.

The balance of seats are held by minor parties and independents.  One new seat has been created in the ACT since the last election bringing the total to 151 seats.

Newspoll currently has Labor ahead of the Coalition 52-48 on a two-party preferred basis.

However, polls are not always an accurate predictor of the result.  In fact, the latest poll indicates just a 1 percent swing to Labor since the last election.

Can Labor pick up 7 seats on a one percent uniform swing?  Will the cross-bench ultimately decide which major party has support to form a minority government?

This is very difficult to predict! Elections are of course fought at the local level on a seat-by-seat basis. It is possible for a party to win a majority of seats without gaining a majority of votes.

The likely result becomes even less clear once preference deals are factored in – not to mention the fact that the proportion of ‘undecided’ voters is even larger than the statistical margin between the major parties.

So, all in all, it looks to be another tight race! Get ready to be inundated by campaign messages – because here they come!


The Coalition fired the first salvo of the 2019 Federal Election Campaign with the release of the 2019-20 Federal Budget.  Here are some of the highlights:

  • $7.1bn surplus forecast.
  • $100bn infrastructure spend over 10yrs, including:
    • $5.5bn for fast rail.
    • $4.0bn Urban Congestion Fund.
    • $2.2bn Road Safety Package.
    • $4.5bn for Roads of Strategic Importance.
  • Establishment of a National Office of Road Safety.
  • Additional funding for key programs such as the:
    • Black Spot Program;
    • Roads to Recovery Program;
    • Bridges Renewal Program;
    • Heavy Vehicle Safety and Productivity Program;
    • Building Better Regions Fund.
  • A new ‘Keys2drive’ program for learner drivers.
  • A new National Freight Data Hub.
  • $8m for the NHVR to work with local governments to improve road access.
  • For businesses with an annual turnover of less than $50m:
    • Tax rate reduced to 27.5 percent (2019-20);
    • Tax rate reduced to 25 percent (from 2021-22);
    • Instant asset write-off increased to $30,000;
  • Personal tax relief by:
    • Increasing the 19% threshold from $41,000 to $45,000 (2022-23); and
    • Reducing the 32.5% marginal tax rate to 30% (2024-25).
  • Increased tax off-set for low and middle income earners.
  • Increased enforcement for tax avoidance and sham contracting.
  • Superannuation concessions for Australians aged 65 and 66.

ALRTA was particularly pleased that an additional $1bn was committed to the Roads of Strategic Importance Program, bringing the total to $4.5bn.  This program will invest in key freight corridors to more efficiently connect agricultural and mining regions to domestic and international markets.

The increased commitment is in line with the ALRTA’s call for a $1bn injection into regional freight corridors in our 2017 submission to the Inquiry into National Freight and Supply Chain Priorities.

For more detailed information on the Coalition’s infrastructure program, including a state by state breakdown, click here.


As expected, vegan activists held simultaneous protests at several sites around Australia on Monday this week.  All of the protests were designed to cause maximum distress and disruption for the livestock supply chain and the general public.

It has been reported that vegan activists:

  • chained themselves to vans to block a busy intersection in Melbourne’s CBD.
  • trespassed at abattoirs at Warwick (QLD), Goulburn (NSW) and Laverton, Geelong, Bacchus Marsh, Packenham (VIC) – in some cases dangerously chaining themselves to machinery or blocking entry or exit points.
  • confronted a dairy farmer, ‘rescuing’ animals by letting them loose onto the road.

Prior to these events, Federal and State governments warned of severe penalties and that these may be increased.  Police and industry bodies issued advice to assist affected parties to rationally and legally deal with the protestors.

Across Australia, around 50 protestors were arrested and their actions widely condemned as illegal and un-Australian.

Prime Minister Morrison has offered Commonwealth financial support to farmers willing to pursue legal test cases against the protestors.  Attorney-General Porter has asked for a review of privacy laws to punish organisations that publish maps of livestock supply chain locations.

To their credit, livestock producers, processors and transporters responded reasonably in the face of extremism that borders on social and economic terrorism.

While all of this is obviously distressing to those directly involved and others associated with the livestock industry, we can all take heart from the unprecedented public backlash against the vegan protesters.

Mainstream Australia clearly does not support militant vegans and this was evident in the relatively small number of vegan protestors (even when considered on a nation-wide scale) and the many thousands of anti-vegan social media posts/memes that immediately followed.

To put things in perspective, 100 vegan protestors is a far cry from the 100,000 people who marched peacefully in the ‘Change the Rules’ protest about workplace relations in Melbourne later the very same week. Considering that 100,000 people caused less traffic and business disruption than 100 vegans, it is easy to see why militant vegans remain few in number and widely despised.

If social media is anything to go by, meat consumption may have actually increased across Melbourne on the day of the vegan protest.  There was no shortage of individuals who responded at lunchtime by intentionally switching to meat-based meals and posting pictures in support of the livestock industry.

Illegal? Yes. Annoying? Yes.  But with such overwhelming negativity directed at the vegans themselves these misguided souls are just undermining their own cause.


ALRTA congratulates Frank and Georgie Marley (LRTAWA) and Kel Baxter (LBRCA) on being recognised as this year’s Kenworth Legends at Trucking Australia 2019.

Photo: Frank and Georgie Marley and family.

Photo: Kel Baxter and family. 


Geoff Crouch has been re-elected as Chair of the Australian Trucking Association (ATA) in an uncontested vote during the association’s annual general meeting in Perth last week.

The ATA represents the 50,000 businesses and 200,000 people in the Australian trucking industry.

Mr Crouch was first elected as ATA Chair in 2017, and as the Director of Ron Crouch Transport has a deep understanding of the trucking industry both as an operator and at an association level.

“I plan to continue the ATA’s existing engagement with all sides of politics and all industry stakeholders to ensure the voice of those we represent is heard loud and clear,” Mr Crouch said.

“Additionally, I will follow through on our commitment to mental health and wellbeing. We have spoken about this issue for long enough. It is time to take real action,” he said.

Mr Crouch said he also looks forward to ensuring the ATA continues to contribute to the Heavy Vehicle National Law review.

“It goes without saying that this review is desperately needed to bring new thinking into how our industry should be regulated.

“We are confident the result of this collaboration between industry, government and regulators will lead to positive outcomes,” he said.

The meeting also saw the election of Julie Russell, director of Russell Transport, as a new board member.

“I’m pleased to welcome Julie as a member of the ATA board. She has extensive experience as a member of the industry, as President of the Queensland Trucking Association and a TruckSafe director,” Mr Crouch said.

Over the years, Ms Russell has actively worked on numerous committees and boards within the road transport industry and was named National Trucking Industry Woman of the Year in 2015.

“As we welcome Julie to the board, we farewell longstanding retiring Director Tim Knowles, and thank him for his long service and great contribution to the ATA board,” Mr Crouch said.

“I am also pleased to welcome returning directors Andy Divall, David Simon, Simon Skazlic and Geoff Luff, as well as Andrew Garrety, who was re-elected as Treasurer and Secretary,” he said.


The Australian Trucking Association has celebrated the achievements of the trucking industry’s finest individuals and organisations, at the 2019 National Trucking Industry Awards.

The ATA represents the 50,000 businesses and 200,000 people in the Australian trucking industry and announced the award winners in Perth last Friday at the Trucking Australia 2019 Foundation Sponsors Awards Gala Dinner.

“The Gala Dinner and National Trucking Industry Awards are not only a highlight of the Trucking Australia conference, but the whole year,” ATA Chair Geoff Crouch said today.

“These prestigious awards recognise those who have demonstrated exceptional dedication to the Australian trucking industry through their hard work and commitment.

“It’s important to celebrate those who go the extra mile and inspire others,” he said.

The 2019 National Trucking Industry Award winners are:

  • Outstanding Contribution to the Australian Trucking Industry – Leigh Smart
  • National Professional Driver of the Year – Bernard Forssman
  • National Trucking Industry Woman of the Year – Coralie Chapman
  • National Training Excellence Award – Australian Furniture Removers Association
  • TruckSafe John Kelly Memorial Award – Nolan’s Interstate Transport.

“This year we received an unprecedented number of award nominations, highlighting the high standard and calibre of those who represent the Australian trucking industry,” Mr Crouch said.

“Our award recipients were extremely well-deserving, and I thank each winner for their contribution.

“I would also like to extend thanks to our award judging panel, led by former ATA Chair Trevor Martyn OAM,” he said.


Please be aware that New South Wales, Queensland, Victoria and Western Australia have travel restrictions in place over the Easter holiday period for agricultural, oversize/overmass and special purpose heavy vehicles.

For more information click here.


Members are advised that the ALRTA National Council will next meet face-to-face in Adelaide on Thursday, 13 June 2019.  For more information please contact the ALRTA Secretariat on (02) 6247 5434 or


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ALRTA News – 5 April 2019






Kenworth has added even more flexibility to the T610 with the release of a 600mm aero roof sleeper cab to complement its existing day-cab, 760mm mid-roof and 860mm sleeper cab options. To find out more visit


ALRTA advises that animal activists are expected to hold protests in all Australian states next week.  The groups involved include Aussie Farms, Dominion and Vegans Rising.

The most likely day of action will be Monday, 8 April 2019, to coincide with the release of the documentary ‘Dominion’.

ALRTA understands that simultaneous protests in Sydney, Melbourne, Hobart and the Darling Downs (via Brisbane) are being actively organised with the aim of conducting ‘the biggest protest the world has ever seen’.  Exact sites are not known but activists are being advised to arrive in vehicles with full fuel tanks.

The Queensland Police Service has issued some useful guidelines to assist those who may be targeted to prepare for and to deal with protests if they occur.  The guidelines can be read here.

The Australian Meat Industry Council (AMIC) has also issued advice to members for dealing with protests which can be accessed here.

Please assist in advising all drivers, operators and others in the supply chain who may be affected.


This week, Treasurer Frydenberg delivered his first Federal Budget which included a return to surplus in 2019-2020, personal and company tax cuts, increased tax write-offs and a massive roads and infrastructure program.

Labor has responded with larger tax cuts for lower income earners, cancer treatment funding along with increased taxes on property and shares and increased spending on schools and hospitals.

ALRTA and ATA are currently analysing the detail on the competing announcements and we will provide you with more detail on what it means for rural trucking next week.

An election date has not yet been announced but is expected soon.


The NTC has released the first of eight issues papers on various aspects of the Heavy Vehicle National Law (HVNL) review.

The first paper considers a ‘risk-based approach to regulating heavy vehicles’.

The purpose of the paper is to:

  • describe good regulation and options for regulatory approaches
  • summarise the current state of the HVNL
  • identify and confirm problems with the current regulatory approach
  • seek preliminary views on the ways we can improve heavy vehicle regulation

The National Transport Commission (NTC) will accept feedback until Friday, 31 May 2019.

The ALRTA will be preparing written submissions on behalf of members states and operators.

If you would like to express an opinion on this topic, or any other matter concerning the HVNL, please contact your State Member Association or the ALRTA on (02) 6247 5434 or


ALRTA representatives Stephen Marley (National President), David Smith (LRTASA President & ATA Vice Chair), Jan Cooper (LRTAWA Executive Officer) and Mat Munro (ALRTA Executive Director) attended Trucking Australia 2019 in Perth this week.

Photo: ATA Future Leaders.

The rural and regional sector has been well recognised in the program so far with Athol Carter (Frasers Livestock Transport) and Angela Mumma (Stockmaster) speaking as part of the Daimler Future Leaders session and Frank and Georgie Marley (LRTAWA) and Kel Baxter (LBRCA) interviewed during the Kenworth Legends Lunch.

Photo (L-R): Brad May of PACCAR Australia interviews the 2019 Kenworth Legends Georgie & Frank Marley and Kel Baxter. 

Jan Cooper (LRTAWA) and David Smith (LRTASA), are among the finalists in the 2019 National Trucking Industry Awards – we wish them the best of luck as the winners are announced at the Gala Dinner tonight!

Look out for a full wrap up next week!


ALRTA Project Officer, Sue Davies, attended the CropLife  Australia Agricultural Industry Federal Budget Breakfast 2019 to hear Minister for Agriculture and Water Resources, the Hon. David Littleproud MP, deliver a post budget speech.

Following on from a welcome and introduction by Matthew Cossey, Chief Executive Office of CropLife Australia, Minister Littleproud’s address covered; the Murray Darling Basin Plan (MDBP) and the advantages of government’s plan to decentralise MDBP staff to regional areas, a positive future for Australia’s live export trade, the government record on establishing free trade agreements and opening markets to Australian agriculture, as well as the need to raise awareness in the community about the excellent quality of Australian agricultural produce and the good practices of our farmers.

Minister Littleproud went on to tell the audience about the government’s plan to implement a new biosecurity certification program, in partnership with the National Farmers Federation and Australian National University and spoke of the importance of investment in research and development, encouraging the agricultural sector to support this.

The breakfast meeting was a good opportunity for ALRTA to mix with other influential agricultural stakeholders, including several we consulted with recently about the Effluent Code of Practice.


A new report ahead of Easter School Holidays shows truck fatalities are down. New national figures show the number of fatalities involving trucks has dropped 14 per cent (%) in 2 years with predictions we could see zero truck-involved fatalities from 2032. An analysis of Australia’s largest database of major crashes involving heavy vehicles shows a downward trend, with the number of fatal truck accidents the lowest in nearly two decades.

The National Truck Accident Research Centre (NTARC) report released at the Australian Trucking Association’s National Trucking Conference found the trend has Australia within a generation of achieving zero deaths from crashes involving heavy vehicles.

Report author Adam Gibson, of National Transport Insurance, said: “To put the figures in perspective, the decline in the number of heavy-vehicle involved deaths between the 2017 and 2019 reports equates to 1545 lives being saved”.

The report also found nation-wide, the overall number of crashes caused by fatigue was down.

“Encouragingly, we’ve seen the lowest number of fatigue-related crashes in the report’s 16-year history. Fatigue was the cause of 9.8% of major crashes, down from 20% a decade ago.”

A State-by-State breakdown reveals:

  • two out of every five serious fatigue accidents occur in New South Wales
  • the risk of a fatigue accident occurring in Queensland is 51% higher than the national average
  • in Western Australia, 15 per cent of the State’s major truck crashes are the result of fatigue
  • Fatigue-related crashes in Victoria and South Australia decreased in the last two years by 68% and 40% respectively

“As an industry, we welcome new technology which alerts drivers to their fatigue, so that they might take a break and rest, before there’s any loss of life.”

Australian Trucking Association Chair Geoff Crouch welcomes the results although says there is still work to be done.

“We need to see a strong commitment from our government for practical safety solutions like an improved truck driver licensing system and mandatory safety technologies for new trucks,” Mr Crouch said. “The ATA is working hard to improve safety outcomes, focusing on the improvement and increase of heavy vehicle rest areas, making the fatigue laws more flexible and hearing from drivers first-hand what they think will work, as we are doing this week at our Trucking Australia conference,” he said.

“As we head into the Easter school holidays, we are urging all road users to take extra care to ensure everyone makes it home safely,” Mr Gibson said.

A PDF of the NTARC 2019 Major Accident Investigation Report can be found here


When your truck is also your home on the road, sometimes for days on end, it’s great to know you’re in the best truck with the best sleeper cabs available – the T610 sleeper range.

The new T610 1400mm aero roof sleeper completes the T610 range, which now provides Australian operators the broadest choice of purpose-built cabs and sleepers for their needs. Offering enhanced driver comfort, space and flexibility in fit-out, the most spacious sleeper in the Kenworth range comes with even more interior space and in-cab standing room than its 50” predecessor.

Designed from the inside out in a decade-long development process, the T610 cabin is centred entirely on the needs of the driver. Touted as Kenworth’s ‘Best Truck Yet’, the design incorporates greater foot space, more storage, wider walkthrough access between the seats and more expansive door and windscreen glass, providing space, visibility and ergonomics never before seen in Kenworth’s suite of Australian-made trucks.

“The core of the T610 project was about building a bigger cab to create the ultimate driver environment, which leads to better all-round driving performance, safety, efficiency and productivity” said Brad May, PACCAR Australia’s Director Sales and Marketing.

“The 1400mm sleeper cab option allows maximum living space for our customers whose applications allow it. The Aero roof allows freedom of movement with full height standing room between the seats – and a fantastic bunk as standard that allows a quality well-earned sleep for drivers.”

The T610 is the result of more than 100,000 Australian design hours and more than ten million kilometres of testing and validation, the T610 has been the single largest investment in product development the company has made in Australia. From idea to reality, this significant investment in new technologies and design is specifically for the Australian road transport market.

It is the culmination of more than 40 years of Australian design and application engineering experience, integrating with a parallel development program drawing on the global resources of PACCAR. The T610 delivers Kenworth’s most innovative, durable and productive truck yet, designed and manufactured right here in Australia for our local conditions and applications.

For more information about the T610 1400mm Aero Roof Sleeper, click here
For more information about the T610, click here
For more information about the T610SAR, click here
To read what others are saying about the T610 and T610SAR, click here
To speak with your local dealer about the new 1400mm Aero Roof Sleeper option, click here



The Australian Women’s Leadership Symposiums are a national series of events focused on the experiences of women leaders in the contemporary workforce.

Taking place in every state and territory capital between May and August, the Symposiums are an unparalleled gathering of the best and brightest female talent. Keynote speakers include Tina Arena AM, Ita Buttrose AO OBE, Clare Bowditch, Michelle Cowan, The Right Hon Dame Jenny Shipley, Jacqui Lambie, Jessica Rowe and many, many more.

The symposiums will feature a range of presentations, panel discussions and interactive sessions covering a range of topics, including:

  •  To change or to disappear: 3 strategies as a leader to survive in an ever-changing business environment
  •  Breaking the competency trap and developing adaptive leadership
  • Womenkind: Unlocking the power of women supporting women
  • Let’s talk about non-traditional roles
  • Lessons learnt in the world of politics
  • Be heard and remembered: How to use your stories to influence effective change in the workplace

An attendance discount of 25% is currently available by entering code ANSY19 at the time of booking (available until each symposium sells out). For more information and to book:


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Members are advised that the ALRTA National Council will next meet face-to-face in Adelaide on Thursday, 13 June 2019.  For more information please contact the ALRTA Secretariat on (02) 6247 5434 or

Posted in ALRTA Council, ALRTA Weekly News, Animal Welfare, ATA, HVNL, Kenworth, NTI | Tagged , , , | Comments Off on ALRTA News – 5 April 2019