ALRTA News – 28 February 2020


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ALRTA has lodged a submission to the National Transport Commission (NTC) supporting a moderate increase in both the heavy vehicle registration and Road User Charges of 2.5 per cent in 2020-21 and a further 2.5 per cent in 2021-22, conditional on a commitment to improve rural fright routes.

ALRTA National President Stephen Marley. 

ALRTA National President Stephen Marley said that industry remains supportive of a return to cost recovery principles provided that charging increases are reasonable and better quality rural road infrastructure is delivered.
“In November 2019, Ministers considered a proposal to increase charges over three years from 1 July 2020 by 6.0%, 3.0% and 2.4% respectively, compounding to 11.8%. After vigorous industry lobbying, Ministers sensibly concluded that the proposal was not feasible given the current economic outlook affected by drought, bushfires, floods, live sheep export market closures.  The likelihood of a corona virus pandemic only makes a bad situation worse,” said President Marley.
“ALRTA does however recognise the need for Australian Governments to increase investment in road freight infrastructure and this need is greatest in rural and regional Australia.”
“Over the last century, grain, fibre and livestock production has increased dramatically in what was once considered more marginal agricultural regions.   In the past 30 years, technological advances have resulted in heavy vehicles becoming far more powerful, larger and capable of safely carrying much heavier loads.”
“Yet, while the vehicles have improved, most of the roads servicing Australia’s agricultural production zones have not had a significant upgrade in 70 years or more.”
“Across Australia, there are numerous examples of important rural freight and tourism routes that are in distress.  Many of these routes are country highways or ‘cross highway’ roads that run between country highways – roads that taxpayers would generally expect to be up to the task of moving rural produce efficiently and safely delivering tourists through the region.”
“Most State and Territory Governments also allocate a proportion of funding to regional roads projects.  However, the reality is that these programs are just scratching the surface.  Even with all of these programs, important rural freight and tourism roads continue to decline.  Each program is a welcome, but relatively small band-aid solution, for what is a major problem of national significance.”
“Rural transport remains prepared to pay our way, but we need to see a tangible commitment from State and Federal Governments to deliver the road infrastructure necessary for ensuing that our regions remain globally competitive,” he said.


Integrity Systems Company has announced upcoming changes to the LPA National Vendor Declaration (NVD).
Key Points

  • Updated versions of NVDs for all species will be available from 1 July 2020.
  • Current versions of NVDs for all species will continue to be accepted until 31 December 2020.
  • From 1 January 2021 only updated version NVDs (0720) will be accepted for all species.
  • Producers are encouraged to limit NVD book orders of the current version, in preparation for the change.
  • Producers that use the eNVD platform will automatically access the updated version from 1 July 2020.

For more information click here.


The Senate Standing Committee on Rural and Regional Affairs and Transport has announced that a Public Hearing into the Importance of a Viable, Safe, Sustainable and Efficient Road Transport Industry will be held in Brisbane on 16 March 2020.
ALRTA has previously lodged a submission to the Industry containing 15 recommendations.

ALRTA National President Stephen Marley addresses media following a forum preceding the Senate Inquiry. 

Further public hearings are expected during 2020. The Committee will report to the Australian Senate by 14 October 2020.

For more information click here.


WorkSafe Victoria has issued a safety alert relating to unloading trucks at mines and quarries. The alert follows two separate instances in which semi-tippers rolled onto their sides while unloading.

The first incident involved a semi tipper rolling onto its side whilst unloading roadbase on a downward sloping roadway. Material that stuck within the trailer while it was being raised contributed to instability. The operator was restrained by a seat belt and was uninjured.

The second incident involved a B Double truck’s front trailer rolling on its side while unloading gypsum on flat ground. The material had consolidated as a result of being in the trailer for an extended period, causing it to stick in the trailer during unloading. The operator remained in the cab and was uninjured.

For information about risks, controls and legal duties click here.


The Australian Trucking Association (ATA) has welcomed the release of the 2020 Infrastructure Australia Priority List, which calls for upgrades to urban and regional roads to boost safety and address congestion, and much needed improvements to rural, regional and remote freight routes. 

The ATA and its member associations collectively represent the 50,000 businesses and 200,000 people in the Australian trucking industry. Together, the ATA and its members are committed to safety, professionalism and viability.

“The 2020 Infrastructure Australia Priority List has illustrated the importance of evidence-based infrastructure investment decisions and called for road improvements that would have significant safety benefits,” ATA Transport and Infrastructure Adviser Sam Marks said today. 

“In early 2019 the ATA called for the priority list to have a stronger focus on regional and remote roads, so we welcome the 2020 list and its new initiatives that would address a number of important regional routes,” he said. 

The ATA welcomed Infrastructure Australia’s measures to address the road maintenance backlog, with a new initiative for a national road maintenance strategy. 

“Early maintenance on roads can significantly reduce future costs, and deliver better roads,” Mr Marks said.

 “This strategy would include a review of road conditions and prioritise the fixing of roads in poor condition using a structured, evidence-based process,” he said. 

 Mr Marks said the ATA also welcomed the inclusion of new priority projects that have had business cases assessed, and would deliver road capacity and improve freight connectivity. 

 “When combined with existing initiatives and projects, the priority list presents governments with a comprehensive and evidence-based infrastructure agenda,” Mr Marks said.

 “The ATA encourages governments to prioritise these projects and the further development of business cases to ensure an evidence-based approach to infrastructure investment result in better roads on the ground,” he said.

Governments should prioritise projects from the priority list, including:

  • National initiatives for investing in road maintenance, optimising the road network and reducing safety risks on regional roads
  • Major upgrades to Queensland national, state and local roads, including the Bruce Highway, M1 Pacific Motorway, Peak Downs Highway and the inland road network
  • Addressing important routes in Western Australia, including regional and rural roads, the Blindoon Bypass, the Great Northern Highway and the Wheatbelt secondary freight network
  • Key New South Wales routes including the Great Western Highway, Princes Highway, M4 motorway, Sydney Gateway, Outer Sydney Orbital, Newell Highway and regional road network upgrades
  • Building the North East Link and M80 ring road upgrade in Victoria
  • Upgrading Eyre freight capacity, Adelaide’s North-South corridor and Sturt Highway access for high productivity freight vehicles in South Australia
  • Upgrading the Tanami Road in the Northern Territory and its links to Western Australia
  • Tasmania’s Burnie to Hobart corridor and the Derwent River crossing.


ALRTA National Office landline in Canberra is now working with a diversion to the mobile phone. This will be in place until the NBN is installed. This has been a slow process and ALRTA apologies if we have missed any calls due to the transition.