ALRTA News 30 June 2017

NATIONAL ANIMAL WELFARE COMMITTEE

The ALRTA National Animal Welfare Committee met via teleconference this week.

Most of the meeting was devoted to planning the initial stages of our user-pay unloading frame demonstration project (funded under the Heavy Vehicle Safety and Productivity Initiative 2017-18) and developing an agreed strategy to establish a managed effluent disposal facility in a strategic roadside location in South East Queensland.

The Committee has also written to MLA seeking a review of the national fit-to-load guide in the next 12 months.

We regret to report that Safe Work Australia has declined our recent project proposal to develop national crate standards to replace the piecemeal approach taken across different jurisdictions.  While acknowledging that our proposal has merit, SWA will be at full capacity for the next 18mths after having been directed by Ministers to develop a series of new model codes of practice under national workplace health and safety laws.  We will revisit the issue down the track.

 

BE PART OF NEW FATIGUE RESEARCH

What’s happening? 
The Alertness CRC, with the NTC, is conducting field research to analyse the impacts of the HVNL on work and rest hours on heavy vehicle driver fatigue. The research will measure sleeping patterns, driver drowsiness and driving performance both on the road during real-world work shifts and off the road in a laboratory/controlled track setting.

Why? 
Until recently, we haven’t known enough about how the current laws are impacting heavy vehicle driver fatigue and related road safety risks, as we didn’t have the scientific tools to measure this impact. With the development of improved alertness monitoring devices, we now have the capability to undertake research to objectively measure drivers’ alertness across a work schedule, to monitor driving impairment indicators, and to measure the quality and quantity of drivers’ sleep during minimum rest periods, so enabling us to provide quality data and evidenced guidance in support of any future reforms.

Who might be interested in the project? 
Any heavy vehicle operator or driver who is interested in supporting naturalistic driving research to better understand driver fatigue in the industry, and who is interested in championing evidence-based law reform.

Drivers with a heavy vehicle truck licence who are fatigue-regulated heavy vehicle drivers under the HVNL. You should undertake either local work or long-distance driving (minimum 30 hours a week driving), and must work either standard hours or BFM.

Heavy Vehicle Operators, including BFM operators, whose drivers can be made available. Operators of all sizes, including owner-operators, and operators across all industry sectors, including livestock and dairy, are welcome to participate.

What will research involve? 
Phase 1 is an on-road field trial that will assess drivers’ alertness levels, sleep, and driving impairments in naturalistic/real-life driving conditions. Phase 2 will include a controlled study in a laboratory and on a closed-loop test track that will evaluate how simulated shift patterns, and other features of heavy vehicle work schedules allowed under the HVNL (e.g. placement of sleep and work periods), impact drivers’ alertness levels and driving performance.

We are also interested in interviewing selected drivers to better understand their experiences under HVNL and the operational considerations of the research.

If you are interested in contributing to this research, or would like to find out more, please contact: med-crc.drivealert@monash.edu

 

CHANGES FROM 1 JULY 2017

As always, 1 July 2017 is an important date with several changes occurring to laws, taxes and charges.  Just click on the links below to find the necessary information:

Changes to the HVNL and NHVR Fees

Changes to Registrations

Changes to the Road User Charge

Changes to Fuel Tax Credit Rates

Don’t forget the ALRTA National Office is also moving from 1 July 2017.  There may be some disruption to our normal services during the relocation due to risks associated with moving our telephones and IT platform.  If you are have not received a response to an enquiry in a timely manner you can contact the ALRTA Executive Director on 0421 082 489.

You can find our new physical and postal address on our website.

 

MLA UPGRADES ASSURANCE PROGRAM

MLA has announced several changes to the Livestock Production Assurance Program to further safeguard Australia’s enviable status as a world leader in red meat safety, integrity and traceability.

From 1 October 2017:

  1. Two new modules will become requirements of LPA accreditation: on-farm biosecurity and animal welfare practices.
  2. LPA-accredited producers will need to renew LPA accreditation every three years. As part of this, producers will need to complete an assessment and pay a $60 (plus GST) fee every three years.
  3. Online learning modules will be available to help producers understand their obligations.
  4. A free electronic LPA National Vendor Declaration (LPA eNVD) will be available.

The changes are designed to ensure Australian red meat maintains its global reputation and stays ahead of its competitors. They will ensure our integrity system continues to meet customer expectations, and will give producers the evidence to stand by what they sell.

By having a renewed process of accreditation, producers will better understand their on-farm responsibilities and the crucial role they play in driving the growth and prosperity of our industry.

The changes will complement the review and relaunch of TruckCare later this year and further demonstrate that consumers are increasingly conscious of animal welfare, food safety and environmental issues.

NATIONAL TRUCKING AWARDS

ALRTA congratulates the winners in each category of the National Trucking Awards presented last weekend at the Trucking Australia Conference.

You can check out more information on each of the winners here.

 

UPCOMING EVENTS

LRTAWA Conference

The ALRTA President and Executive Director will be attending the LRTAWA Annual State Conference 30 June – 1 July 2017 at the Light House Beach Resort in Bunbury.

LRTAV Conference

The LRTAV Annual State Conference will be held 11-12 August 2017 at the RACV Resort in Torquay.

Check here for more information.

 

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