ALRTA News – 15 June 2018

LIVE EXPORT BATTLE MOVES TO COURT

The battle over live sheep exports to the Middle East is now being waged on three fronts: media, Federal Parliament and Federal Court.

This week, Animals Australia launched a case in the Federal Court arguing that the Department of Agriculture unlawfully issued a permit for the export of 58,000 sheep from Freemantle on 6 June 2018.

Lawyers for Animals Australia allege that a permit could only be granted if the livestock were healthy and there were adequate arrangements in place to prevent risks to livestock health and welfare.

The Department of Agriculture is defending its legal right to issue the permit.

This case may have implications for other shipments.  A trial date is yet to be set.

REMINDER: LIVE EXPORT LETTER CAMPAIGN

The ALRTA calls on all members and interested parties to urgently write to your Federal Member of Parliament and other key decision makers to express your view about proposals to phase out live sheep exports.

For more information click here.

ALRTA SUBMISSION ON FIT TO LOAD GUIDE

The ALRTA has lodged a submission in response to the MLA review of the Fit-to-Load Guide.

We have argued that the Guide should do more to assist responsible persons to respond appropriately to a number of relatively common conditions including:

  • hernia;
  • uncut claws;
  • blindness;
  • broken horns;
  • prolapse; and
  • expression of pain.

In addition, we believe that it would be appropriate for the guide to include the loading densities stipulated in the Land Transport Standards.

Given that the ALRTA is the peak industry body representing 850 road transport businesses servicing the agricultural supply chain we have also asked for a position on the internal review committee.

HAVE YOUR SAY: HVNL REVIEW

ALRTA wants to hear from you!

Ministers have endorsed the calls by ALRTA and other stakeholders to bring forward the scheduled HVNL review by 2 years.  Terms of reference are now being drafted.

Please tell us your biggest problems with the current Heavy Vehicle National Law.

Send your comments to: office@alrta.org.au

HVNL CHANGES FROM 1 JULY

A national mass increase for two-axle buses and twin steer tri-axle semitrailer combinations will be among a number of changes to the Heavy Vehicle National Law and regulations starting July 1.

NHVR CEO Sal Petroccitto said the changes would provide nationally consistent mass limits for the two classes of heavy vehicles.

“Two-axle buses equipped with dual tyres on the rear axle can operate up to 18 tonnes, conditional on the bus being equipped with some additional safety features,” Mr Petroccitto said.

“This means buses in South Australia, ACT and Tasmania can operate at the increased mass limit, similar to buses that are currently operated in Queensland, NSW and Victoria.

“Mass limits for twin steer tri-axle heavy vehicle combinations will also increase from 42.5 tonnes to 46.5 tonnes, providing more flexibility for operators.”

More information on changes to the mass limits of the semitrailer combinations and the bus changes can be found at www.nhvr.gov.au/publications

Among other changes, heavy vehicle operators using tag trailers will be required to operate under 1:1 towing mass ratio, similar to pig trailers and dog trailers.

More information on the requirements for tag trailers can be found in VSG22 – Requirements for tag trailers at www.nhvr.gov.au/vsg

All penalties will increase by CPI and access charges will increase from $72 to $73, also in line with CPI. An access fee will also be applied to all Higher Mass Limit permit applications from July 1.

More information on changes to penalties can be found at www.nhvr.gov.au/penalties, while information on NHVR fees for 2018-19 can be found at www.nhvr.gov.au/fees

The NHVR has also provided a summary of some minor changes to the Vehicle Standards, including warning sign requirements for long vehicles and road trains, rear marking plate requirements, condensate drain valve requirements and number plate markings for hydrogen and electric powered vehicles.

The changes are available in VSG 2 – Changes to heavy vehicle safety standards, at www.nhvr.gov.au/vsg

The first round of changes to national heavy vehicle registration agreed to by state and Federal governments will also begin, including:

  • a new national heavy vehicle plate and nationally consistent plate fee in participating states and territories (jurisdictions)
  • more jurisdictions removing heavy vehicle registration labels
  • the option for fleet operators across all jurisdictions to set common registration expiry dates.

Further changes to the registration system, including free read-only access to fleet registration details on a digital platform will be available later this year.

More information on the changes to the registration scheme can be found at www.nhvr.gov.au/registration

NEW TRUCK SAFETY LAWS A STEP CLOSER

New truck safety laws are a step closer, with the Queensland Parliament yesterday passing the first of two amendment bills needed to make the laws work.

One other bill still needs to be passed before the new laws come into effect on 1 October 2018. The new laws will apply in NSW, Victoria, Queensland, South Australia, Tasmania and the ACT under a co-operative scheme arrangement.

The ATA and its member associations have advocated for the development and extension of the truck safety laws since 2012, as part of its plan to improve truck safety and eliminate prescriptive red tape.

“This is an important win for the industry. It has taken us a long time to get here but the last pieces of the new safety provisions are now in place,” ATA Chair Geoff Crouch said today.

“Safety is everyone’s responsibility, and these new laws mean customers and trucking businesses have to focus on developing and maintaining appropriate safety systems,” he said.

Together with amendments passed in 2016, the new laws introduce:

  • a strong general safety duty, including on trucking industry customers
  •  the extension of the chain of responsibility concept to cover vehicle maintenance and repairs
  • due diligence obligations on company directors and executives to ensure chain parties comply with their primary safety duty
  • maximum penalty increases for the most serious cases to bring them in line with other national safety laws and
  • the removal of red tape and unnecessary legislative requirements.

With the support from the Australian Government and NHVR, the ATA and the Australian Logistics Council have developed a master registered code of practice to help businesses comply with the new law, manage risks and improve safety.

“The master code of practice is designed to make businesses safer and ensure they are compliant with the new provisions,” Mr Crouch said.

“The ATA’s best-practice accreditation system, TruckSafe will implement the master code to help members comply with the changes and make sure they’re covered.

“Under chain of responsibility, participants in the road transport chain – including consignors and consignees – can be held accountable for safety issues on the road, so I strongly recommend that businesses become TruckSafe accredited,” he said.

More on TruckSafe accreditation

PBS RECOMMENDATIONS ENDORSED

Transport Ministers have endorsed the NTC’s recommendations arising from the review of the PBS scheme.  The recommendations include:

Recommendation 1: That states and territories identify PBS networks for each access level, and the NHVR publish a National Notice for each by end of financial year 2020–21.

This includes:

  1. assessing priority freight routes in their jurisdiction for approval as a PBS network
  2. identifying any infrastructure that falls within routes assessed under 1(a) that requires prescriptive limits (mass, dimension or other)
  3. publishing approved routes, including the prescriptive limits applied to relevant sections, online on the National Key Freight Routes Map and NHVR Journey Planner
  4. engaging with and assisting local governments within state and territory jurisdictions to assess and map their own access levels, to provide end-to-end key freight routes.

Recommendation 2: That Austroads and the NHVR:

  1. compare the methodologies used to assess infrastructure across Australia (including pavements and bridges)
  2. engage with road managers to design a nationally consistent guideline to assess infrastructure by the end of 2019
  3. transition to a nationally consistent methodology by end of financial year 2019–20
  4. produce relevant training materials for road managers to use the guidelines
  5. consider an online database that makes infrastructure mass limits or loading limits publicly available.

Recommendation 3: That the NHVR review and revise the PBS standards by the end of financial year 2018–19 and every seven years thereafter. The initial review should include (but not be limited to) consideration of:

  1. the effects of new technology, and catering to future technology
  2. the management of tyres in PBS assessments and ongoing vehicle operations
  3. whether there is a continued need for four PBS levels
  4. the best way to assess a vehicle’s impact on local amenity, public health and the environment, or whether these matters should be left to access guidelines.

Recommendation 4: That the NHVR develop and lead a comprehensive and ongoing communications plan as soon as resources permit, with the support of the states and territories, that:

  1. publicises the benefits of the PBS scheme
  2. provides information about:
  1. the background to the Performance-Based Standards
  2. their relationship to prescriptive standards
  3. application and approval processes
  4. National Notices for PBS networks
  5. route assessment guidelines and tools.

PACCAR RECEIVES TRAINING AWARD

PACCAR Australia has been awarded the 2018 Victorian Manufacturing Hall of Fame Award for Leadership in Workforce Skills. PACCAR Australia was inducted into the Victorian Manufacturing Hall of Fame in 2012 and this is the third time the company has been recognised with a training award by the Victorian Government.


Photo: PACCAR Australia employees with Tom Cooper, PACCAR Australia Operations Director (3rd from left), Andrew Hadjikakou, Managing Director (4th from left) and Robert Brierley, HR Manager (far right).

“It is gratifying to be recognised by the government for our work in manufacturing and skills development. We are immensely proud of our long history of manufacturing Kenworth trucks in Australia and the work we are undertaking to secure our position as the pre-eminent truck manufacturer in the country with a highly skilled workforce,” said Andrew Hadjikakou, Managing Director of PACCAR Australia.

This Award recognises the investment undertaken by PACCAR Australia in skills development of its employees, suppliers and dealer network associated with the design, launch, manufacture and aftermarket support of the Kenworth T610. The Manufacturing Hall of Fame also recognised PACCAR Australia’s recent milestone achievement of having manufactured 60,000 Kenworth trucks in Australia.

PACCAR Australia employs more than 1,100 people directly, and many thousands more through its independent dealer and supplier networks. Its supply chain includes approximately 70 major Australian suppliers located across the country, with many of those being locally-owned companies located in the Melbourne region. Depending on the model and specification, a Kenworth truck comprises around 60 percent Australian-owned resources.

Managing Director of PACCAR Australia, Andrew Hadjkakou observed;
“Manufacturing has grown for 15 consecutive months in Victoria and we are so proud to be part of that progress.

“Production of Kenworth trucks continues to increase and, with our announcement at the end of last year that assembly of DAFs will commence in the third quarter at our Bayswater Production Facility, we are optimistic this will contribute to further growth in the state, and the country.”

“The success of the Kenworth range in Australia is due to the company’s commitment to offer products that are designed and manufactured in Australia, with ongoing capital investment from PACCAR Inc. in the form of product research, design and manufacturing technology.

The Manufacturing Hall of Fame Awards, established in 2001, showcases and recognises the breadth and depth of companies and individuals involved in manufacturing and innovation within Victoria.

The Minister for Industry and Employment the Hon Ben Carroll hosted the event for more than 1,000 manufacturing industry attendees on May 28 in Melbourne. He reported manufacturing in Victoria is experiencing a growth and resurgence at a level not seen for nearly 15 years. He stated Victoria’s manufacturing industry contributes $27.7 billion to the Victorian economy, with more than 13,000 businesses employing more than 286,000 people.

NTI LANDS A DOUBLE WIN

nti is proud to have been named winner across two categories at the inaugural Insurance Business Australia Awards, held recently in Sydney:

  • Winner – Australian Underwriting Agency of the Year
  • Winner – Underwriting Agency Claims Team of the Year

The awards recognise business achievements, innovation, levels of service and commitment to the insurance industry and broader community throughout 2017, and come after what can only be described as a monumental year for the company, says nti’s Chief Executive Office, Mr. Tony Clark.

“To gain industry acknowledgement on the back of so much change and growth in 2017, is a testament to our people and our culture,” said Mr. Clark.

2017 saw nti acquire a sizable marine portfolio from joint shareholders CGU and Vero, launch a corporate rebrand across all specialty lines, and undertake their largest philanthropic initiative to date.

“As Australia’s leading specialist insurer we’re driven to maintain our position in the market, whilst challenging ourselves to innovate, increase safety, and deliver customer service that’s second to none.”

nti also received notice of maintaining LMI’s 5 Star Rating for the second year running, for Commercial Motor Claims.

LMI Claims Comparison ratings are based on quantitative and subjective data, along with policy features that are deemed integral to a stellar claims experience.

“We don’t rest on our laurels,” said Mr Clark.

“We’re here to walk the talk, and give our customers what they didn’t know they needed, when they really need it the most.”

LRTASA CONFERENCE

The ALRTA President and Executive Director will be in Adelaide this week for the LRTASA Annual State Conference and AGM to be held 15-16 June 2018 at the Adelaide Entertainment Centre.

Look out for a wrap up next week.

UPCOMING EVENTS

LRTAWA Conference
The LRTAWA Annual State Conference will be held 20-21 July 2018 at the Light House Beach Resort in Bunbury.

Click here for more information.

LRTAV Conference
The LRTAV Annual State Conference will be held 17-18 August 2018 in Bendigo.

Click here for more information.

Posted in ALRTA Weekly News, Fit to Load, HVNL, Live Exports, LRTASA, LRTAV, NTI, PACCAR | Tagged | Comments Off on ALRTA News – 15 June 2018

ALRTA News – 8 June 2018

REMINDER: LIVE EXPORT LETTER CAMPAIGN

The ALRTA calls on all members and interested parties to urgently write to your Federal Member of Parliament and other key decision makers to express your view about proposals to phase out live sheep exports.

For more information click here.

SUBMISSION ON LIVE EXPORT REGULATOR

The ALRTA has lodged a submission in response to the independent Review of Live Animal Exports Regulatory Capability and Culture.

We have supported the establishment of an Inspector-General of Livestock Exports.

Generally, the ALRTA considers that:

  1. Past reviews of animal welfare policy and export rules have put too much emphasis on the interests of exporters and producers to the detriment of other parties in the supply chain such as road transport operators;
  2. There is insufficient national coordination of animal welfare policy in Australia; and
  3. There is insufficient oversight of the live export trade.

In preparing our submission we have liaised with transport operators, producers, exporters and welfare advocates.  The review is being undertaken by Philip Moss AM and will report to the Federal Minister for Agriculture and Water Resources, the Hon David Littleproud MP, by 24 August 2018.

VALUE OF CATTLE LIVE EXPORTS

Members are advised that LiveCorp and Meat & Livestock Australia have commissioned Mecardo to undertake an economic analysis of the live cattle export value chain to determine the value of the trade to regional businesses participating in the industry.

Collecting up to date information from industry participants is important for underpinning future research and demonstrating the value of the trade to Australia’s regions.

ALRTA encourages members with an interest in cattle live exports to complete the survey by 15 June 2018.

Please click here to begin.

NTC REPORT ON REGULATORY TELEMATICS

The NTC has released a report on the Review of Regulatory Telematics which aims to increase the uptake of in-vehicle telematics for regulatory purposes in Australia.

The review focussed on the very differing regulatory models for IAP and EWDs and recommends a phased approach to developing one single regulatory model to be legislated within the HVNL.

More specifically, the report makes six recommendations:

  1. Transport Certification Australia will examine the feasibility of improving the Intelligent Access Program.
  2. The NTC will develop national guidelines to assist agency decision-making when assessing new IAP applications.
  3. The NHVR will develop a compliance and enforcement policy for regulatory telematics.
  4. The NHVR will monitor the implementation of electronic work diaries and report on their effectiveness.
  5. The NTC, in consultation with relevant stakeholders, will develop a best practice model for regulatory telematics.
  6. The NTC, in consultation with relevant stakeholders, will assess whether the best practice model should be legislated and included in the Heavy Vehicle National Law.

The report acknowledges the deficiencies in the current IAP system in terms of cost, lack of real-time reporting, inaccuracy of data and generation of an unmanageable number of ‘false positive’ non-conformance reports.

The recently approved EWD system is seen by agencies as potentially not providing the same level of assurance as the IAP system.  This is a bold statement given that the EWD system has yet to roll out and the fact that IAP data has been of almost no value for infrastructure protection or prosecution purposes.

So, not surprisingly, agencies now plan to try and fix the very obvious problems with the IAP system before it is compared with the EWD system as part of the process for moving towards a single unified system.

One major problem with the current IAP system is that there is no consistency around when it is applied. Thus, the ALRTA is quite pleased with the recommendation that the NTC will develop national guidelines to assist agency decision-making when assessing new IAP applications.

However, we would argue that this should go even further.

Agencies will still be free to disregard the guidelines, so the HVNL review process will need to consider recognising any new guidelines as an instrument under the law when moving to a legislated best practice model.

Overall, don’t expect IAP to disappear.  Most likely it will be significantly upgraded so it might actually achieve its original objectives and, hopefully, only be mandated when justified against agreed guidelines.  The bigger concern is an underlying push from some agencies to ‘tighten up’ the voluntary EWD system before it has even begun.

ALRTA was supportive of voluntary EWDs as currently proposed.  Subject to review of operation after 12 months, we believe that this system will be far superior to the IAP model and should result in greater voluntary uptake by interested operators.  If there is a move to turn the EWD system into an IAP type system you can expect our support to very quickly evaporate.

NEW BRAKING TECHNOLOGY TO SAVE LIVES

The Australian Government’s decision to mandate stability control technology for a range of new trucks and trailers has the potential to save 126 lives and prevent 1,101 serious injuries in the coming years, the Chair of the Australian Trucking Association, Geoff Crouch, said today.

The Government released the new Australian Design Rules (ADRs). The new requirement will apply to selected categories of new model heavy trucks from 1 November 2020, and all new trucks in those categories from 1 November 2022. The requirement will apply to all new model heavy trailers weighing more than 10 tonnes from 1 July 2019 and all new heavy trailers weighing more than 10 tonnes from 1 November 2019.

Mr Crouch said that stability control technology was a life saver.

“Stability control is a vehicle safety system that monitors the stability and sideways acceleration of a heavy vehicle and kicks in to brake the vehicle if it detects a rollover starting,” Mr Crouch said.

“The ATA lobbied hard to extend the original proposal that the Infrastructure Department released for consultation.

“As a result of lobbying from the ATA and other stakeholders, the final design rules extend the mandate to include short wheel base rigid trucks weighing more than 12 tonnes.

“This decision is projected to save another two lives over the years and prevent an extra 17 serious injuries compared to the original proposal.

“I want to thank the Government and the responsible minister, Paul Fletcher, for listening to the industry’s views. I also want to thank the expert members of the ATA’s Safety Committee, led by Tim Knowles, and our Industry Technical Council, led by Kel Baxter, who developed the ATA’s position on the issue.”

Mr Crouch said the next step in advancing truck safety technology needed to be Autonomous Emergency Braking (AEB) for all new trucks.

“Autonomous emergency braking applies a truck’s brakes in emergency situations. Monash University research shows that rolling it out across the truck fleet would reduce fatal crashes by up to 25 per cent and serious injury crashes by up to 17 per cent,” he said.

In line with the position advocated by the ALRTA, new road train converter dollies will be exempt from the stability control requirement, because of issues with the technology in the rough conditions encountered by road trains in rural and remote areas. Non-standard low loaders will also be exempt.

Check out the ATA Fact sheet here.

SALEYARDS AND DEPOTS STANDARDS

The Australian Animal Welfare Standards and Guidelines for Saleyards and Depots have been finalised.

The standards and guidelines reflect the commitment of jurisdictions to a nationally consistent approach to animal welfare.  They promote humane and considerate treatment of livestock handled through Australian saleyards and depots; inform all people responsible for the care and management of livestock about their responsibilities; and set a minimum industry standard by defining acceptable livestock management practices.

Development of the standards and guidelines considered current scientific knowledge, recommended industry practice and community expectations.  The standards provide a basis for developing and implementing consistent legislation and enforcement across Australia, while the guidelines are a useful reference for industry, providing recommended practices to achieve desirable livestock welfare outcomes.

The Australian Animal Welfare Standards and Guidelines for Saleyards and Depots replace the Model Code of Practice for the Welfare of Animals: Animals at Saleyards, SCARM report 31, CSIRO publishing, 1992

The new standards and guidelines will now be progressively legislated in each jurisdiction.

HVNL REVIEW: TERMS OF REFERENCE

ALRTA met with the NTC this week in Canberra to discuss the draft terms of reference for the review of the Heavy Vehicle National Law that will be completed by the end of 2019.

On 18 May 2018, Ministers endorsed the calls by ALRTA and other stakeholders to bring forward the scheduled HVNL review by 2 years.

In line with calls from our members during recent discussions about EWDs, ALRTA is pushing to make sure that the review covers all aspects of fatigue, access, technology, accreditation and roadside enforcement.

LRTAQ CONFERENCE WRAP UP

The LRTAQ Conference held in Charters Towers last weekend was an excellent event with great attendance levels and interesting content.


Photo: 2018 Bull Carters Ball

As usual, the individual sessions were held at various venues so that attendees came away having properly experienced the regional hub and our ‘tourist dollars’ were spread around nice and evenly.  This was the first time I have been to a policy forum in an historic picture theatre but I have to say it worked very well.   The forum covered topics including:

  • Enforcement;
  • Livestock loading;
  • Vehicle technology;
  • Safety management systems;
  • Animal welfare;
  • Logistics modelling;
  • Permits and access;
  • Effluent;
  • EWDs;
  • Live exports;
  • Ports; and
  • Business processes.

Always a highlight, the 2018 Mack Trucks Bull Carters Ball was held at an old mental asylum that is undergoing conversion into 5-star accommodation.  A good place to get a little crazy wouldn’t you say?   Keynote speaker and QLD rugby league legend Brent Tate delivered an inspirational address during a Q&A style interview but (fortunately for me) didn’t tip the result of this week’s first State of Origin match.


Photo: QLD Footy Legends Steve Price (left) and Brent Tate (right) with some other bloke.

The LRTAQ AGM was held in the grounds of an historic church now owned by former ALRTA National President, and now Mayor of Charters Towers, Liz Schmidt.  As one member remarked to me over lunch “You don’t get to have a beer in a Church too often”.


Photo: Mayor Liz Schmidt and Mark Johnson (Haulmark Trailers).

ELECTION RESULTS: LRTAQ AGM

The ALRTA congratulates the following office bearers re-elected at the LRTAQ AGM on 2 June 2018:

  • President: Ian Wild
  • Vice President: Gerard Johnson
  • Treasurer: Louise Smith
  • Secretary: Gary Willoughby
  • Immediate Past President: David Scott

UPCOMING EVENTS

LRTASA Conference
Registrations are open for the LRTASA Annual State Conference will be held 15-16 June 2018 at the Adelaide Entertainment Centre.

The weekend kicks off with a Golf competition at Adelaide Golf Links on the fringe of the CBD followed by pre-dinner drinks and dinner at the Entertainment Centre.   The Conference Sessions are on Saturday followed by a Gala Dinner (with entertainment by magician Matt Tarrant) and Auction.

Delegates will also enjoy the free coffee cart and the legendary crumbed lamb chops (seriously you need to try these).

Click here for more information.

LRTAWA Conference
The LRTAWA Annual State Conference will be held 20-21 July 2018 at the Light House Beach Resort in Bunbury.

Click here for more information.

LRTAV Conference
The LRTAV Annual State Conference will be held 17-18 August 2018 in Bendigo.

Click here for more information.

Posted in ALRTA Weekly News, Live Exports, LRTAQ, LRTASA, LRTAV, LRTAWA, NTC | Comments Off on ALRTA News – 8 June 2018

ALRTA News 1 June 2018

URGENT: EXPRESS A VIEW ON LIVE EXPORTS

The ALRTA calls on all members and interested parties to urgently write to your Federal Member of Parliament and other key decision makers to express your view about proposals to phase out live sheep exports.

If you can help, please take action as soon as possible.

The Situation
The continuation of live sheep exports is uncertain. The Federal Parliament is currently debating legislation that will either impose measures to improve the trade or phase it out entirely.

There are two Bills before the House of Representatives and more will follow as the Government implements changes to the current live export rules.

Live Sheep Export Long Haul Prohibition Bill 2018
This Bill was introduced by Liberal backbencher Susan Ley MP.  It proposes to phase out live sheep exports to the Middle East over a five year period.   The Bill is supported by Labour, the Greens and Liberal backbenchers Sarah Henderson MP and Jason Wood MP.

The Government has so far prevented this Bill from being debated and has introduced an alternative Bill (see below) which is now under debate and proceeding rapidly to a vote.

Export Legislation Amendment (Live-Stock) Bill 2018
This Bill was introduced by the Government as a 1st stage response to the ‘Independent Review of Conditions for the Export of Sheep to the Middle East During the Northern Hemisphere Summer’, which made 23 recommendations.

This Bill will dramatically increase penalties for contravening existing live export laws and introduce several new offences which also carry very high penalties of up to:

  • For individuals: 10,000 penalty units or 10 years imprisonment.
  • For corporations: 20,000 penalty units; or three times the value of the benefit obtained by the body corporate; or 10% of the annual turnover of the body corporate in the relevant 12 month period – whichever is the greater.

While Labor will support this Bill, the Shadow Minister for Agriculture has introduced an amendment that would have the same effect as the prohibition bill.

How Can you Help?
Members of Federal Parliament are being inundated by emails as part of a coordinated campaign by animal activists. You may also have noticed newspaper and TV ads.

These emails are emotive and only tell one side of the story.

There is also a human side to this story.

We need you to tell our decision makers about the impact that closure of the live export market will have on your transport business, the livestock supply chain and your regional community.

If you can spare 15 minutes, we ask that you write to your local Member of the Federal Parliament as well as key Senators on the cross-bench who hold the balance of power.

To find the contact details of your Federal Member click here.

Please also cc your email to the following addresses (you can copy/paste this part):

senator.griff@aph.gov.au;  senator.patrick@aph.gov.au;  senator.hinch@aph.gov.au;

senator.anning@aph.gov.ausenator.storer@aph.gov.au;

senator.leyonhjelm@aph.gov.au;  senator.burston@aph.gov.au;

senator.georgiou@aph.gov.au;  senator.hanson@aph.gov.au;

Joel.Fitzgibbon.MP@aph.gov.au;  David.Littleproud.MP@aph.gov.au;

Malcolm.Turnbull.MP@aph.gov.au;  Bill.Shorten.MP@aph.gov.au;

Sussan.Ley.MP@aph.gov.au;  Cathy.McGowan.MP@aph.gov.au;

Bob.Katter.MP@aph.gov.au;  Warren.Entsch.MP@aph.gov.au;

Jason.Wood.MP@aph.gov.au;  Trent.Zimmerman.MP@aph.gov.au;

Andrew.Laming.MP@aph.gov.au;  Luke.Howarth.MP@aph.gov.au;

Sarah.Henderson.MP@aph.gov.au;  Ian.Goodenough.MP@aph.gov.au;

Russell.Broadbent.MP@aph.gov.au;  Trevor.Evans.MP@aph.gov.au;

Rick.Wilson.MP@aph.gov.au;  Tony.Pasin.MP@aph.gov.au;

Rowan.Ramsay.MP@aph.gov.au;  Nola.Marino.MP@aph.gov.au;

Andrew.wilkie@aph.gov.au

What Should I Say?
Emails that are copy/pasted have little impact.  We need you to tell your own story with a particular emphasis on your transport business and your local community.

Your email does not need to be long and detailed – the most important thing is to send one.

Here are some suggested points you might cover:

  • Impacts on your transport business (direct or indirect).
  • Impacts on livestock prices.
  • Impacts on stock numbers and flows.
  • Impacts on local employment.
  • Impacts on service providers, input suppliers and other local businesses.
  • Impacts on property values, human populations and viability of local community groups.

Here are a few facts about live exports you may choose to reference:

  • In 2017, Australia exported 2.8 million cattle, sheep and goats valued at $1.4b.
  • Independent research has shown that saleyard prices for sheep would be at least 18% lower without an export market.
  • Live exports support more than 13,000 jobs in Australia, with wages in excess of $1b annually, and the vast majority being in rural areas.
  • Over 130 countries around the world export livestock.
  • Australia already has the highest animal welfare protections and will tighten these further.
  • Other nations rely on Australia to supply food to their growing populations.
  • Middle Eastern markets cannot substitute live imports with chilled boxed meat.
  • If Australia prohibits live exports, Middle Eastern countries will continue to import live animals from other countries with lower welfare standards – animal welfare outcomes will be worse overall.
  • For example, in 2008-09 Saudi Arabia imported around three million live sheep with 20% of these from Australia. Today, Saudi Arabia imports five million sheep per annum, with none coming from Australia since the introduction of our mandatory animal welfare standards.
  • Kuwait has advised that if Australia prohibits live exports, they will also look elsewhere for processed product that is currently sourced from Australia.  This will result in a double whammy effect on our livestock markets.
  • Australian meat processors support closure of live exports because livestock prices will drop.  Farmers will have no alternative but to accept the processor price.
  • Live export vessels and companies are extremely mobile and will continue to trade from overseas ports.
  • As a first world nation with modern values and an enforceable rule of law, it is important for Australia to play a leading role in improving live export standards.
  • The recommendations of the independent report (including new animal welfare standards, monitoring, reporting and penalties) should be implemented and given a chance to work before irreversible action is taken.

Thank You for Your Support
Immediate action is required to inform decision makers before a vote on the live export bills.  We thank you for taking the time to express your views.

NTC PROPOSES HVNL CHANGES FOR EFFLUENT AND LOAD RESTRAINT

The NTC has released a discussion paper on ‘Effluent and Load Restraint’.  The discussion paper seeks feedback regarding possible amendments to the HVNL to:

  • Clarify the application of chain of responsibility duties for parties in the livestock supply chain; and
  • Allow for minor, incidental and unavoidable (in any practical sense) spills that do not compromise the overriding safety objectives of the load restraint options.

The paper proposes three options and seeks stakeholder views on their preferred approach.

  • Option 1: Amend the definition of party in the chain of responsibility
  • Option 2: Amend section 111 to specifically include other chain of responsibility parties
  • Option 3: Allow for a minor, incidental or unavoidable loss of part of a load

The discussion paper is the result of ALRTA advocacy on this issue over the past two years.

It is widely known that the primary cause of effluent loss from heavy vehicles onto public roadways is poor preparation of livestock prior to transport and lack of supporting roadside infrastructure.

While effluent loss is routinely treated as a load restraint breach under the HVNL, chain of responsibility has not been effective in motivating off-road parties to consider the impact of their animal preparation practices.  In part, this is because livestock are so different from other types of freight that regulators and chain parties are uncertain about how exactly the HVNL captures pre-transit preparation of livestock.

In addition, it is simply not possible to prevent all effluent spills because of the need for crates to be ventilated. It is past-time for a common-sense approach to enforcement of unavoidable minor breaches. This is also the case for other commodity types such as hay or cotton where minor loss is unavoidable.

On 1 November 2016, after the ALRTA made a detailed submission and presented in person at a public hearing, the Qld Parliament Transport and Utilities Committee made the following recommendation:

  •  Recommendation 2: The committee recommends that the Minister work with the other ‘responsible Ministers’ (the relevant Commonwealth and State Ministers) to ask the National Transport Commission to give further consideration within the next twelve months to means by which it can make more transparent, and more easily understood, the applicability of the relevant Chain of Responsibility provisions to pre-transport stock preparation.

This recommendation was supported by the QLD Transport Minister and NTC has responded by developing the discussion paper released this week.

Submissions are due to the NTC by Friday, 6 July 2018.

Please call the ALRTA or speak to your state association to discuss your views on this topic.  ALRTA will prepare a detailed submission to the NTC.

For more information click here.

MINISTERIAL COUNCIL DECISIONS

On 18 May 2018, ALRTA National President, Kevin Keenan, attended the 9thmeeting of the Transport and Infrastructure Ministerial Council in Darwin.

The new format of the meeting allowed President Keenan to make an address to all Ministers calling for improved funding for rural and regional roads as well as improving chain of responsibility for effluent control with appropriate supporting infrastructure.

Key outcomes from the meeting include:

  • HVNL: Ministers agreed to bring forward a review of the HVNL by two years to 2018-19.  Terms of reference drafting is already underway. Ministers also agreed on reforms for PBS vehicles and 4.6m high vehicles (does not appear to include livestock crates).
  • Road Safety: Ministers endorsed a National Road Safety Action Plan for 2018-20. The plan centres around addressing driver distraction (e.g. mobile phones), improved accreditation systems, lifting the uptake of regulatory telematics and more rapid adoption of safety vehicle technologies.
  • National Freight System: Ministers committed to developing a 20 year National Freight and Supply Chain Strategy. The strategy will form the basis of an integrated approach to improving the connectivity of all freight modes and supply chains.
  • Road Market Reform: This will involve independent price regulation of heavy vehicle charges and developing a new forward-looking cost base for charges.  Look out for a consultation RIS and information about trails.
  • Automated Vehicles: Ministers agreed to develop a harmonised purpose-built law for automated vehicles.

ALRTA is currently considering the decisions and will respond as appropriate.

LTAT CONFERENCE WRAP UP

The 2018 LTAT Conference held in Hobart last weekend was a resounding success with more than 70 delegates in attendance.


Photo: Senator Colbeck delivers a keynote address.

It was a full house for the six interactive conference sessions which tackled road access, enforcement, animal welfare, driver safety, biosecurity, effluent management, safety management systems and livestock market dynamics.   There were plenty of questions from the audience which resulted in a deeper understanding of the problems and potential solutions for a swathe of regulatory and market issues.

During the Gala Dinner, Federal Senator for Tasmania the Hon Richard Colbeck delivered an excellent keynote address underscoring the importance of livestock transport for the Tasmanian economy and outlining measures the Federal Government is taking to improve safety, productivity and market access.

Photo (L-R): Senator Richard Colbeck, Tanya Rattray MLC, David Foster OAM, Gaylene Colbeck, David Smith (LRTASA President & ATA Vice Chair).

The second keynote address delivered by David Foster OAM, world champion woodchopper and Tasmanian living legend, was hilarious, thought-provoking and inspiring all in one go.   David has had many obstacles to overcome but he always bounces back and takes on the next challenge head on.  While we may not all achieve the great heights of being a world champion for 21 years straight, we can all achieve more with the right attitude and David is just the bloke to get you motivated!

Photo (L-R): Tony Steers (LTAT Secretary/Treasurer), Spencer Griggs (LTAT President), Nick Hingston (LTAT Vice President). 

The conference would not have been possible without the generous support for our national and state sponsors Beaurepaires, PACCAR & Dealer Industry Fund, PACCAR Parts, IC Frith, Truck Art, Westar Trucks, Bennett’s Petroleum and Roberts Limited.  Thank you!

ELECTION RESULTS: LTAT AGM

The ALRTA National President attended the Livestock Transporters Association of Tasmania (LTAT) AGM on Saturday, 26 May 2018, in Hobart Tasmania.

The ALRTA congratulates the following office bearers re-elected at the AGM:

  • President: Spencer Griggs
  • Vice President: Nick Hingston
  • Secretary/Treasurer: Tony Steers
  • Delegates: Adam Viney & Leigh Jones

ALRTA NATIONAL COUNCIL

ALRTA state association representatives from around Australia attended the ALRTA National Council meeting in Hobart on Saturday, 26 May 2018.

Topics discussed included: Privacy / data sharing, national ramps standards, live exports, effluent, fit-to-load guide, accreditation systems and industrial relations.

The ALRTA National Council will next meet in Melbourne on 16 August 2018.

CHANGE AT THE TOP FOR NTC

NTC CEO, Paul Retter, has announced that he will step down on 28 September 2018.

Mr Retter commenced with the NTC on 8 July 2013.

ALRTA acknowledges the substantial work program that has been progressed by the NTC over the past 5 years under Mr Retter’s leadership and we wish him all the best over the next 4mths and in future.

NTI INCIDENT DATA INDICATES PERFECT TIMING FOR LOAD RESTRAINT GUIDE

Following a recent spike in damages caused from inappropriate load restraint, nti – Australia’s leading specialist insurer is reminding carriers to be vigilant with it comes to securing freight irrespective of the size or value of goods on board.

With safety at the forefront, nti’s CEO Mr. Tony Clark says accidents or damage caused by poor load restraint are largely preventable, and that’s what makes the costly outcomes so frustrating for operators.

“The increase we saw over the last quarter has been out of the ordinary,” he said.

“We need to look at why. The National Transport Commission’s recent review and publication of the Load Restraint Guide couldn’t have come at a better time.”

“It will provide us with a measure for reviewing claims data, moving forward. Here’s hoping we see an improvement across the industry. It’s a genuine safety concern. Poorly restrained loads become dangerous projectiles.”

The guide houses information for transport drivers, operators and others throughout the supply chain, and offers vital insight for preventing injury, damage and loss of goods.

A digital copy of The Load Restraint Guide 2018 is available here, free of charge, by the National Transport Commission.

A copy of the Load Restraint Guide 2018 for Light Vehicles is also available here.

Printed, convenient glovebox-sized copies are also available for purchase via NTC.

UPCOMING EVENTS

LRTAQ Conference
Registrations are now open for the 2018 LRTAQ Annual Conference to be held 1-3 June 2018 in Charters Towers, Queensland.

The event includes a welcome reception, transport forum, community breakfast, AGM, partners program and the legendary Bull Carter’s Ball.  There will even be pig racing (including a Calcutta) and a classic car display!

Click here for more information.

LRTASA Conference
Registrations are open for the LRTASA Annual State Conference will be held 15-16 June 2018 at the Adelaide Entertainment Centre.

The weekend kicks off with a Golf competition at Adelaide Golf Links on the fringe of the CBD followed by pre-dinner drinks and dinner at the Entertainment Centre.   The Conference Sessions are on Saturday followed by a Gala Dinner (with entertainment by magician Matt Tarrant) and Auction.

Delegates will also enjoy the free coffee cart and the legendary crumbed lamb chops (seriously you need to try these).

Click here for more information.

LRTAWA Conference
The LRTAWA Annual State Conference will be held 20-21 July 2018 at the Light House Beach Resort in Bunbury.

Click here for more information.

LRTAV Conference
The LRTAV Annual State Conference will be held 17-18 August 2018 in Bendigo.

Click here for more information.

Posted in ALRTA Council, ALRTA Weekly News, effluent, General News, Live Exports, Load Restraint, LRTASA, LRTAV, LRTAWA, LTAT, NTC, NTI | Comments Off on ALRTA News 1 June 2018

ALRTA News – 25 May 2018

BILL TO PHASE OUT LIVE EXPORTS

Liberal Member for Farrer, Susan Ley MP, has introduced a private members bill into the Federal Parliament that would ban live sheep exports in the northern summer from next year and phase out sheep and lambs to the Middle East (or via the Middle East) within five years.

The bill also has the support of Liberals Sarah Henderson MP and Jason Wood MP.

Federal Labor has declared support for the bill.

It is difficult to determine how the matter may proceed from here.  The ALP is currently down five votes with by-elections to be held for members who have recently resigned due to the dual citizenship issue.  Even if all five are returned, at least another 5 votes will need to come from the cross bench or rebel Liberal MPs.

The Coalition Government also remains in control of deciding which bills are debated in the Parliament and could essentially prevent a vote from occurring.  But considering the MPs behind the bill are from within it’s own ranks nothing can be certain.

The Liberal MPs have however indicated that they will not cross the floor to force a debate on the issue.  Rather, they will use the bill to build support for their position.

Meanwhile, it has been reported that Lisa Chesters MP (Federal Labor Member for Bendigo) is now calling for greater scrutiny of the domestic road transport supply chain.  Victorian Minister for Agriculture the Hon Jaala Pulford MLC has stated that Victoria would participate in greater sharing of incident data at the national level.

ALRTA National Council will meet to discuss these developments on Saturday 26 May 2018.

 

COR CHANGES CONFIRMED FOR 1 OCT

Reforms to the Chain of Responsibility (CoR) laws will be implemented from 1 October.

Timing for the changes was confirmed by Queensland Transport and Main Road Minister Mark Bailey.

NHVR CEO Sal Petroccitto said the start date for the reforms follows lengthy consultation and information for heavy vehicle businesses over the past 18 months.

“The NHVR has been engaging with many of the 165,000 businesses which make up the heavy vehicle supply chain, and conducted more than 100 workshops,” Mr Petroccitto said.

“October 1 provides the additional time that some sectors were asking for to prepare for the changes, particularly the agricultural sector.

“This change to CoR laws is a significant leap forward in recognising everyone in the heavy vehicle supply chain has a role to play in ensuring safety.

“The reforms complement national workplace safety laws, and place a positive duty-of-care on supply chain parties.

“Duty holders who assess their risks and manage them will be complying with both the HVNL and workplace safety law.”

The NHVR has information available including CoR Gap Assessment tools, role-specific fact sheets, Safety Management System templates and tools, and videos and podcasts.

For more information click here

 

CHANGES COMING TO REGO PLATES

Changes to heavy vehicle registration are being progressively implemented to benefit industry by introducing common practices, processes and fees, with the aim of making it easier and cheaper to operate by reducing cross-border red tape and fleet-management administrative costs.

For more information click here.

 

TOILETS, LIGHTS AND WATER ARE NOT JUST ‘DESIRABLE’

The Australian Trucking Association (ATA) has called for major changes to the guidelines for building truck rest areas as access to toilets, lighting and water have been classified as ‘desirable’, not a requirement.

“Our roads and rest areas are a driver’s workplace and we have little chance of resolving fatigue if drivers are not provided with basic human rights to get the job done,” ATA CEO Ben Maguire said today.

The ATA was responding to an Austroads research report on updating the guidelines for truck rest areas. Austroads is a research organisation funded by the Australian and state governments.

“Access to toilets, lighting and water are a basic human right, yet the highest proposed truck rest area classifications only list these as desirable,” Mr Maguire said.

“These amenities are a requirement. No other workplace would compromise on these facilities, so why should drivers have to?” he said.

“Having appropriate rest area facilities for heavy vehicles is not optional. It’s not nice to have: it is a fundamental requirement and obligation for road providers and government,” Mr Maguire said.

In its response to the report, the ATA has made a number of recommendations:

  • Governments should provide truck rest areas every 20 kilometres, allowing drivers to comply with work diary rules
  • There should be no general and caravan parking in the truck section of any rest area, and this must be enforced
  • Specific engagement of women drivers should be undertaken on the provision of toilet facilities at rest area locations, and on whether these should be unisex or gender specific, and
  • Guidelines must prevent road agencies from temporarily closing rest areas to store roadworks materials.

“The Austroads report does not go far enough to acknowledge the need to treat heavy vehicle operators with respect, nor the important link these basic amenities have on the safety and wellbeing of drivers,” Mr Maguire said.

“There should be a strong set of guidelines, an independent audit on the current state of rest areas, and then a funded national plan from governments to address the gaps,” he said.

Mr Maguire recently spent a night at the Partridge VC Rest Area in NSW to walk in the shoes of a truck driver and experience first-hand what managing fatigue is like in a ‘best practice’ truck rest area.

“Spending the night in a rest area was my chance to better understand life on the road and the shortcomings of Australia’s rest areas,” he said.

“The amount of noise was far louder than what is acceptable in a normal workplace and the bathroom facilities were poorly lit.

“If I were a lone female truck driver pulling up for a rest, I would not feel comfortable nor safe using these facilities,” he said.

 

NEW REPORT CALLS FOR 24HR PERMIT APPROVALS

The Australian Trucking Association (ATA) has welcomed the focus of an Australian Government inquiry into national freight and supply chain priorities.

The Deputy Prime Minister, Michael McCormack, launched the report at today’s ministerial Transport and Infrastructure Council meeting in Darwin. The report’s key recommendations focus on boosting productivity, improving road access and streamlining the permit approval process.

“The ATA welcomes the report, which shows that Michael McCormack and the Australian Government understand the importance of trucking and the need to make the road freight transport regulations more efficient,” ATA CEO Ben Maguire said.

“The report supports the ATA’s calls for an urgent, independent and agile review of the Heavy Vehicle National Law, including road access approvals.”

The report recommends:

  • the streamlining and review of permit approvals, with the aim of reducing the approval period on key freight routes to 24 hours
  • improving road access and targeting investment to key freight routes and last mile access
  • the expansion of infrastructure investment programs to improve road access for high productivity and oversize/overmass vehicles
  • the reinvestment of road charges revenue to road infrastructure investments
  • better consideration of freight in urban and land use planning
  • improving infrastructure for regional supply chains, including sealing roads and providing mobile phone coverage and broadband.

“The ATA welcomes the Government’s commitment to improving our national freight and supply chains. This expert report will pave the way toward significant reform,” Mr Maguire said.

 

UPCOMING EVENTS

LRTAQ Conference
Registrations are now open for the 2018 LRTAQ Annual Conference to be held 1-3 June 2018 in Charters Towers, Queensland.

The event includes a welcome reception, transport forum, community breakfast, AGM, partners program and the legendary Bull Carter’s Ball.  There will even be pig racing (including a Calcutta) and a classic car display!

Click here for more information.

LRTASA Conference
Registrations are open for the LRTASA Annual State Conference will be held 15-16 June 2018 at the Adelaide Entertainment Centre.

The weekend kicks off with a Golf competition at Adelaide Golf Links on the fringe of the CBD followed by pre-dinner drinks and dinner at the Entertainment Centre.   The Conference Sessions are on Saturday followed by a Gala Dinner (with entertainment by magician Matt Tarrant) and Auction.

Delegates will also enjoy the free coffee cart and the legendary crumbed lamb chops (seriously you need to try these).

Click here for more information.

LRTAWA Conference
The LRTAWA Annual State Conference will be held 20-21 July 2018 at the Light House Beach Resort in Bunbury.

Click here for more information.

LRTAV Conference
The LRTAV Annual State Conference will be held 17-18 August 2018 in Bendigo.

Click here for more information.

Posted in General News | Comments Off on ALRTA News – 25 May 2018

ALRTA News – 18 May 2018

SENATOR COLBECK TO ADDRESS LTAT CONFERENCE

LTAT and ALRTA are pleased to announce that Federal Senator for Tasmania the Hon Richard Colbeck will deliver a keynote address at the LTAT Conference in Hobart on Saturday, 26 May 2018.

Senator Colbeck has a distinguished Parliamentary Career having held Ministerial and Parliamentary Secretary responsibilities for Agriculture, Fisheries, Forestry, Tourism, Trade, Finance and International Education.

During the gala dinner, attendees will also hear an address by World Champion Axeman and Tasmanian living legend, David Foster OAM.

The interactive conference program is packed with relevant topics and excellent panellists, covering:

  • Road access;
  • Enforcement;
  • Animal welfare;
  • Driver safety;
  • Biosecurity;
  • Effluent management;
  • Safety management systems; and
  • Livestock market dynamics.

Registrations are now open – so be sure to secure your place as soon as possible.

What: Livestock Transporters Association of Tasmania (LTAT) Conference
When: Saturday, 26 May 2018
Where: RACV/RACT Apartment Hotel, Hobart

Register for the conference here: 2018 LTAT Conference Registration Form

Click here for the Conference Program.

For more information: http://alrta.org.au/about/events/

We thank local and national sponsors for generously supporting the event including: Beaurepaires, PACCAR & Dealer, PACCAR Parts, IC Frith, Bennet’s Petroleum and Westar Trucks.

 

LIVE EXPORTS REPORT RELEASED

The Federal Minister for Agriculture and Water Resources has released an ‘Independent Review of Conditions for the Export of Sheep to the Middle East During the Northern Hemisphere Summer’, undertaken by veterinarian Dr Michael McCarthy.

The report was instigated by Minister Littleproud after footage aired on 60 Minutes last month demonstrated that current practices, monitoring, reporting and penalties applicable to live export vessels are not always delivering the animal welfare standards expected by the community and the livestock supply chain.

The report does not recommend discontinuation of the trade.

The report does however make 23 recommendations broadly relating to stocking densities, ventilation, thermo-regulation, measurement of animal welfare, independent observation and increased penalties.  The Minister and the Department of Agriculture have accepted all 23 recommendations.

The primary recommendations are:

  • that the industry moves away from using mortality as a measure to a focus on measures that reflect the welfare of the animal. Within the risk assessment model this replaces the mortality limit with a heat tolerance level;
  • that the risk settings on the Heat Stress Risk Assessment (HSRA) are to be adjusted to better reflect community expectations;
  • that space allocation should embrace ‘allometric’ principles and adopt a k-value of 0.033, and this be utilised for any periods within the May to October period, unless overridden by the HSRA model’s assessment;
  • that a vessel’s pen air turnover (PAT) be independently verified, as part of the condition of an approved arrangement for sheep travelling to the Middle East during the northern hemisphere summer;
  • that the reportable level for sheep travelling from Australia to the Middle East be reduced from 2% to 1% effective immediately; and
  • further recommendations as described in the body of the review.

It is anticipated that the new settings will impose substantial restrictions on many vessels wishing to participate in the trade during the northern hemisphere summer period, depending on the month, their ventilation capabilities, the cargo they intend to carry and the destinations involved.

For exporters, it will mean lower stocking densities, along with an underlying incentive to upgrade ships to decrease the probability of heat stress (to reduce the economic impact of the restrictions).

Chair of the ALRTA National Animal Welfare Committee John Beer said that the report was a significant step in the right direction.

“This is a tremendously important issue for Australian farmers, road transporters and rural communities generally.  Closure of the live export market would have been devastating for our regional supply chain and those overseas who rely on our food products”, said Mr Beer.

“While lower stocking densities are likely to have a consequential impact on domestic livestock prices and demand for road transport services, the 23 recommendations contained in the report are a reasonable and measured response to unacceptable practices by a small minority of exporters.

“We must embrace a new way of doing business now and remain ever vigilant to minimise the risk of similar incidents occurring in future. All Australians deserve to know that our animals are being treated humanely at all points in the supply chain,” said Mr Beer.

A further report into the capabilities, investigative capacity and culture of the Australian independent regulator for live exports is due in August 2018.

The full McCarthy Report can be found here

ALRTA ATTENDS MINISTERIAL COUNCIL

Today, ALRTA National President, Kevin Keenan, attended the 9th meeting of the Transport and Infrastructure Ministerial Council in Darwin.

The format of the meeting has changed with industry observers now given a chance to speak during a one-hour interactive forum prior to a longer closed session for Ministers and select officials only.

ALRTA will raise the importance of improved funding for rural and regional roads as well as improving chain of responsibility for effluent control with appropriate supporting infrastructure.

Look out for a more detailed update next week.

 

REVIEW OF FIT-TO-LOAD GUIDE

MLA has announced a review of the ‘Is it Fit to Load?’ Guide.

ALRTA wrote to MLA seeking the review on 27 June 2017.  RSPCA and Animal Angels lodged similar requests.  It has been more than 5 years since the last review.

MLA has established an internal working group and invited submissions by 15 June 2018.

Previously, ALRTA has argued that the guide could do more to assist responsible persons to respond appropriately to a number of relatively common conditions including: hernia; uncut claws; blindness; broken horns and expression of pain.  It would also be helpful for the guide to include loading densities.

If you have suggestions please contact your state association or the ALRTA Secretariat.

 

PARLIAMENT ABOLISHES FIRS

Last week, the Australian Parliament passed the Interstate Road Transport Legislation (Repeal) Bill 2018 with the support of both the Government and Opposition.

This legislation will:

  • Close FIRS to new entrants and re-registration by existing FIRS operators from 1 July 2018;
  • Preserve provisions required to facilitate the operation of FIRS for a 12 month transitional period after closure to new entrants and re-registrants; and
  • Close FIRS to all operators by 30 June 2019.

The ATA opposed the passage of this legislation and the closure of FIRS.  Governments are supporting the closure of FIRS because it will abolish stamp duty concessions and because of the supposed establishment of a national heavy vehicle registration scheme.

The problem is that the new scheme is not actually a national registration system.  To the casual observer it may look like a national registration system but fundamentally it is really just a national plate and an NHVR-state data sharing arrangement.  Operators will still need to deal with state registries, pay state stamp duty, hold state CTP and transfer registrations inter-state.

Don’t be fooled by the national plate – we still have a long way to go.

 

REVIEW OF FUEL SECURITY

The Australian Government has announced a review of Australia’s liquid fuel security.

Liquid fuel accounts for 98 per cent of transport fuel and 37 per cent of national energy use.

Previous reviews have indicated that Australian reserves of liquid fuels are well short of the International Energy Agency’s emergency stockholding obligations.  The agency mandates that countries hold at least 90 days supply but Australia currently has just:

  • 22 days of crude oil;
  • 21 days of diesel;
  • 19 days of aviation fuel; and
  • 59 days of LPG.

The review is due to be completed by the end of 2018 and will contribute to a broader consideration of energy security across liquid fuel, electricity and gas supplies in the National Energy Security Assessment by mid-2019.

 

SAFETY ASSURANCE FOR AUTOMATED VEHICLES

NTC is seeking feedback on a new approach to a safety assurance system for automated vehicles.

According to NTC Chief Executive Paul Retter, Australia’s existing laws and regulations do not recognise automated vehicles.  The Consultation RIS seeks feedback on what role Australian governments will play in assuring the safety of automated driving systems, and what form a safety assurance system would take.

You can find out more here.

 

TRUCK DRIVER LICENSING: AN INSULT THAT MUST BE FIXED

The truck driver licensing system is an insult to Australia’s expert, hard working truck drivers and must be fixed, the CEO of the Australian Trucking Association, Ben Maguire, said today.

Mr Maguire was responding to the results of an independent review of the National Heavy Vehicle Driver Competency Framework. The review was published this month.

“Australia’s transport ministers commissioned the review in response to the ATA’s concerns about driver training. In fact, we called for this review in the run up to the 2016 federal election,” Mr Maguire said.

“The review is now done. Its findings show that the current truck driver licensing system is inadequate.

“The review shows, for example, that the current heavy rigid training unit (TLILIC2016) fails to address six out of the ten safety risks it identifies. The unit only partly addresses the other four out of ten.

“The poor quality of the driver training system is an insult to Australia’s expert, hard-working truck drivers, who have spent many years learning their profession.

“It’s also an insult to the many driver trainers that are committed to safety, such as ATA member DECA Training, which offers outstanding post-licence courses for drivers who want to be recognised as professionals.

“When Australia’s transport ministers meet on Friday, they need to consider the results of this review and take urgent action,” he said.

Mr Maguire dismissed the argument that improving driver licensing might worsen the shortage of truck drivers.

“There is a shortage of new starters in the trucking industry, but it’s due to the image of the industry and the image of truck driving as a career. By improving the professionalism of the industry, strengthening driver training would make driving more, not less, attractive as a career,” he said.

Read the Austroads report

 

NATIONAL ANIMAL WELFARE COMMITTEE

The ALRTA National Animal Welfare Committee met via teleconference this week to discuss live exports, ramp standards, effluent, loading frames and saleyard practices.

 

UPCOMING EVENTS

LRTAQ Conference
Registrations are now open for the 2018 LRTAQ Annual Conference to be held 1-3 June 2018 in Charters Towers, Queensland.

The event includes a welcome reception, transport forum, community breakfast, AGM, partners program and the legendary Bull Carter’s Ball.  There will even be pig racing (including a Calcutta) and a classic car display!

Click here for more information.
LRTASA Conference
Registrations are open for the LRTASA Annual State Conference will be held 15-16 June 2018 at the Adelaide Entertainment Centre.

The weekend kicks off with a Golf competition at Adelaide Golf Links on the fringe of the CBD followed by pre-dinner drinks and dinner at the Entertainment Centre.   The Conference Sessions are on Saturday followed by a Gala Dinner (with entertainment by magician Matt Tarrant) and Auction.

Delegates will also enjoy the free coffee cart and the legendary crumbed lamb chops (seriously you need to try these).

Click here for more information.

LRTAWA Conference
The LRTAWA Annual State Conference will be held 20-21 July 2018 at the Light House Beach Resort in Bunbury.

Click here for more information.

LRTAV Conference
The LRTAV Annual State Conference will be held 17-18 August 2018 in Bendigo.

Click here for more information.

Posted in General News | Comments Off on ALRTA News – 18 May 2018