ALRTA News – 29 November 2019

Goodyear an ALRTA National Sponsor


Australian Transport Ministers have agreed a preference for increases in heavy vehicle charges of 2.5% in each of the next two years and tasked the National Transport Commission (NTC) with consulting industry and reviewing the charging methodology.  The NTC had proposed increases of 6.0%, 3.0% and 2.4% over three years from 1 July 2020.
The decision was made at the Transport Industry Ministerial Council on 22 November 2019.
Not surprisingly, the trucking industry strongly opposed the NTC’s proposed charging increases.
ALRTA and our State Member Associations, as well as the Australian Trucking Association and other affiliated associations made urgent representations to all Federal and State transport Ministers ahead of the 22 November 2019 meeting.
We argued that the charging increases would have a severe negative impact on rural and regional Australia that is already struggling with a depressed national economy, fires and widespread drought conditions.  The NTC and Federal Government had not consulted industry about the proposed increases as legally required, and it would appear that no account has been taken of the $1.6b that the trucking industry has already been over-charged.
ALRTA Immediate Past President, Kevin Keenan, was part of an industry delegation invited to speak directly with Ministers prior to their decision. Within two business days, the Assistant Minister for Road Safety and Freight Transport chaired a meeting of NTC and industry peak bodies to discuss the charging model and options for reform.

Ministers also agreed on a number of elements for longer-term heavy vehicle charging reform including:

  • using the National Service Level Standards Framework for Roads to inform investment planning;
  • independent determination of what spending is recoverable from heavy vehicle charges using the National Service Level Standards Framework for Roads;
  • independent setting of heavy vehicle charges, [noting the 2018 Decision Regulation Impact Statement on Independent Price Regulation of Heavy Vehicle Charges]; and
  • dedicating (hypothecating) heavy vehicle revenue to fund and finance roads.

 ALRTA is now considering the data supplied by NTC and will respond as appropriate.
It is times like these when the value of strong industry associations really shines through.  Trucking is a powerful lobby when we work together. Road freight transport underpins the entire Australian economy with 200,000 people working in more 50,000 transport businesses.  We contribute around $122.3b to the economy annually accounting for 7.4% of GDP.  Governments can ill-afford to ignore our peak associations. As a result of our combined efforts leading into 22 November 2019, the heavy vehicle charge increase for 2020-21 will be less than half what it would otherwise have been.

A summary of all Ministerial decisions can be found here


ALRTA Executive Director, Mat Munro, and LRTAWA Vice President Rural (and ATA Future Leader), Matt Henderson, attended the first gathering of the Parliamentary Friends of Trucks, Trailers, Transport and Logistics (PFTTL) at Australian Parliament House.  The PFTTTL is an joint initiative of the Australian Trucking Association (ATA) and Heavy Vehicle Industry Association (HVIA).

Nola Marino display’s her father’s truck. 

The gathering was hosted by the Hon Nola Marino, MP Assistant Minister for Regional Development and Territories and Senator Glenn Sterle Shadow Assistant Minister for Road Safety (Labor Senator for Western Australia).  Several other Federal Parliamentarians were also in attendance. The PFTTTL aims to bring together decision makers and industry experts to build the profile and influence of the trucking sector.


Road user charging, driver training, advanced emergency braking systems and payment terms have all be raised by the next generation of trucking industry leaders in lobbying meetings with senior politicians.

ALRTA Executive Director, Mat Munro, with ATA Future Leader, Matt Henderson (LRTAWA VP Rural).

Participants in the 2020 Daimler Truck and Bus Future Leaders’ Forum raised these key issues in lobbying meetings this week with Assistant Minister for Road Safety and Freight Transport, Scott Buchholz, Shadow Minister for Infrastructure, Transport and Regional Development, Catherine King, and Shadow Assistant Minister for Road Safety, Senator Glenn Sterle.

“These are issues of importance and relevance to every member of the Australian trucking industry. It is vital their interests are represented with a strong and united voice,” ATA Chair Geoff Crouch said.

“The ATA is proud to work with our young leaders who have demonstrated a strong commitment to improving industry,” he said.

During their time at Parliament House, the 2020 Future Leaders also sat in on the House of Representatives Question Time after a formal lunch with Deputy Prime Minister The Hon Michael McCormack and Assistant Minister for Regional Development and Territories The Hon Nola Marino.

“The Daimler Truck and Bus Future Leaders’ Forum provides an invaluable opportunity for participants to further their careers while representing their member associations and businesses,” Mr Crouch said.

“Not only do our participants receive mentorship in media, leadership, and politics, they also have a chance to put their learnings into practice right away in real-life circumstances.

“It is clear from our time during the forum sessions and our meetings today at Parliament House that our 2020 cohort have the passion and expertise to make a positive change,” he said.

Following their time in Canberra this week, the 2020 Future Leaders will each complete a take-home leadership project on an industry issue important to them, which will be presented at Trucking Australia 2020, held in Cairns from 1-3 April.


ALRTA was delighted to host a visit from Mr John Ernst, Project Manager of Safe Freight Networks Australia (SFNA).

Mr John Ernst and Mat Munro. 

SFNA started in Gippsland in 2010.  The network has since brought together a range of stakeholders in local areas involved in road freight.  This includes: Company Owners, Drivers, Police, Local/State & Federal Government Representative as well as road owners. SFNA has worked constructively to develop an ongoing culture of safety based on world’s best practices and experiences.  The networks are unique to the conditions of each area and hence focus only on the local priorities.  This has led to major reductions in casualty crashes involving heavy vehicles.   It goes beyond the Chain of Responsibility and works on a whole of route approach for driver safety. 

SFNA is all about local people, identifying local problems, and implementing local solutions. The proof is in the pudding. SFNA has been instrumental in significantly reducing rollovers, reducing truck-light vehicle crashes, reducing overloading and promoting better effluent management. While you won’t hear much about these outcomes on the national stage, each has made a big difference to a problem in a local area.

ALRTA will be pleased to advise members of upcoming SNFA meetings in your area. Stay tuned!


ALRTA considers it extremely important to regularly engage with our national sponsors and partners. Last week, ALRTA Marketing Officer, Colleen Mays, caught up with Kenworth, PACCAR Parts, Cummins and Goodyear in Melbourne.  ALRTA Executive Director, Mat Munro, caught up with BP in Melbourne; Cummins, Kenworth, Byrne Trailers and PACCAR Parts in Canberra and NTI and Goodyear in Brisbane.

Anthony Crawford, Goodyear General Manager Commercial, and Mat Munro at the Goodyear Rocklea Depot.

Look out for a hardcopy mailout from ALRTA this week containing an overview of the great work we have done, which is supported by our National Partners.


An NHVR survey of close to 40 heavy vehicle operators using Advanced Fatigue Management (AFM) has found that those taking advantage of the flexibility offered by AFM had fewer fatigue-related incidents, an improved safety culture and higher productivity than other operators. 
NHVR Principal Safety Assurance Advisor Andreas Blahous said that the study followed calls for the Heavy Vehicle National Law (HVNL) to allow for increased flexibility when effective fatigue management systems are in place.
“The study demonstrates the significant benefits of AFM and a more flexible fatigue management framework for both safety and productivity,” Mr Blahous said. 
Read more


National Heavy Vehicle Accreditation Scheme services will be available in the NHVR Portal from 2 December 2019.
Operators will be able to manage their NHVAS tasks including submitting an application, managing account information, reviewing application status, reviewing accreditation status, reviewing driver and vehicle lists, paying for applications, viewing payment history and tracking audit associated. 
From Friday 29 November, the NHVR Accreditation team will start transferring NHVAS applications received via email, fax or web forms to the NHVR Portal. 
Read more


Did you know that the Kenworth Australia website contains some short video ‘PACCAR Portraits’ of prominent ALRTA members?  Just click on the links below to view.
Kelvin Baxter Transport
Frasers Livestock Transport


ALRTA congratulates office bearers elected at the LTAT AGM on Saturday, 23 November 2019:

  • President: Nick Hingston
  • Vice President: Adam Viney
  • Secretary/Treasurer: Tony Steers
  • Immediate Past President: Spencer Griggs
Tony Steers, Spencer Griggs and Nick Hingston.