THANK YOU TO OUR
NATIONAL SPONSOR – BYRNE TRAILERS
LATEST BORDER CROSSING REQUIREMENTS
The NHVR is maintaining an online register of border crossing rules in each jurisdiction. To get the latest click here.
Below are some useful links to other essential information for transport businesses:
ATA summary of coronavirus information (including border permit information)
New Victorian business restrictions – guidance for transport businesses
New Victorian business restrictions – guidance for warehouses in Victoria
New Victorian business restrictions – guidance for supermarket distribution centres in Melbourne
Essential worker permit for Melbourne
MEDICARE REBATE FOR COVID TESTS
ALRTA is pleased to inform members that a Medicare rebate is now available for COVID-19 testing of asymptomatic interstate truck drivers.
Testing services under the new item can only be provided by private sector pathology providers, must be bulk-billed, and are not available to hospital in-patients.
The MBS fee for the new item is $110.00, with an 85% benefit of $93.50.
DON’T PRESSURE TRUCKIES AS COVID RESTRICTION STARTS
Trucking industry customers must not make demands that would affect safety if there are delays due to Victoria’s COVID restrictions, National Heavy Vehicle Regulator (NHVR) CEO Sal Petroccitto and Australian Trucking Association CEO Ben Maguire said today.
Mr Petroccitto said the Heavy Vehicle National Law imposed duties on the trucking industry’s customers as well as trucking businesses.
“By law, road freight safety is a shared responsibility of all the businesses in the supply chain, whether they operate trucks, load them, consign freight or receive it,” Mr Petroccitto said.
“Businesses in the supply chain must, so far as is reasonably practicable, not cause or encourage other businesses or drivers to break the law, such as by speeding or driving while fatigued.
“It has to be recognised that the Victorian restrictions may cause delays, particularly with the reduction in the peak workforce at supermarket distribution centres.
“The NHVR will not tolerate attempts to pressure trucking businesses or drivers to break the law to maintain schedules. We all need to focus on safety and getting this virus under control, not on meeting delivery KPIs that may now be unachievable.”
Mr Maguire said the ATA’s member associations and corporate members had reaffirmed that the first priority of supply chain businesses must be the safety of their workers and the public.
“The ATA and our member associations represent thousands of trucking businesses, large and small. This week, at our general council meeting, our members confirmed their commitment to safety first,” Mr Maguire said.
“It is essential that every business in the supply chain recognises that they must maintain safety on the road. I urge our customers to consult their road freight providers about how they are responding to the restrictions, to make sure their approach doesn’t affect safety.
“We owe it to our drivers and we owe it to the public to keep our roads safe.”
Mr Petroccitto said that anyone with safety concerns could contact the NHVR’s Heavy Vehicle Confidential Reporting Line on 1800 931 785.
IF IT MOVES, IT CAN CARRY DISEASES, PEST AND WEEDS
Biosecurity is a shared responsibility among all members of the livestock supply chain. Livestock transporters play a significant role in day to day biosecurity and are on the forefront when it comes to minimising the risk of livestock disease spread, particularly during an emergency animal disease response.
However, there is currently limited information regarding biosecurity available to the livestock transport sector, nor are there clear communication channels across the industry that can be used during an emergency animal disease response in order to reach all workers on the ground. To determine what information transporters require and how it is best communicated, the Australian Livestock and Rural Transporters Association (ALRTA), Biosecurity Queensland and Animal Health Australia have developed an online survey to capture the thoughts of livestock transporters.
The survey was due to be delivered at the LRTAQ Conference in Roma, however due to its unfortunate cancellation it’s been redeveloped into an online questionnaire. The survey will open 14 August and close on 11 September 2020. All transporters who complete the survey will go into a draw to win a 60L Engel fridge freezer, complements of ALRTA and AHA, valued at $1899!
The project has also designed signs (see below) for Queensland truck washdown facilities to highlight the importance of good washdown practices for minimising disease and weed spread. These signs will be installed across washdown facilities in the coming months so keep your eyes peeled!
For further information regarding the project, please contact the Animal Health Australia Extension team at email@example.com.
NEW Q FEVER VACCINE TRIALS
The National Q Fever Taskforce welcomes the announcement yesterday by Regional Health Minister Mark Coulton that the Australian Government will invest $1.87 million to support the development of a new vaccine for Q fever.
The Taskforce was formed in 2019 to raise awareness of Q fever and its impacts on regional communities and workers, and to advocate for national action to address the risk of Q fever.
Q fever is an acute infection that can lead to debilitating long-term health issues, and because the bacteria that causes Q fever is spread from animals – mainly livestock – Q fever is an ongoing concern for regional and rural communities.
Farmers, those who work in the agriculture supply chain, their families, and communities at risk of Q fever continue to report issues with the affordability and accessibility of the Q fever vaccine in regional areas.
The existing vaccine is prohibitively expensive for many, and requires multiple visits to a medical practitioner with appropriate training to carry out testing and administer the vaccine. A further limitation of the existing vaccine is that it is not approved for use in children.
Advocating for investment in a new and improved vaccine has been a key priority for the National Q Fever Taskforce, which includes organisations representing the farm sector, meat industry, livestock transporters, regional communities and Q fever researchers.
The Taskforce congratulates the Morrison Government for this new funding commitment, which will support Q fever researchers – including the Australian Rickettsial Reference Laboratory and the NSW Department of Primary Industries (Elizabeth Macarthur Agricultural Institute) – to investigate the dose-effectiveness of a new vaccine, prior to clinical trials.
Today’s announcement is a welcome response to the advocacy of National Q Fever Taskforce member organisations, who also acknowledge the allocation of funding by the Australian Government in June this year for research into the use of the current vaccine in adolescents.
The Taskforce is committed to working with governments and others to raise awareness about Q fever, to ensure that effective and affordable vaccines are accessible to those at risk of contracting Q fever and ultimately to minimise the negative impact of Q fever on the health of regional, rural and remote Australians.
HORSHAM EFFLUENT PIT
LRTAV President John Beer and member Gordon Fischer congratulate Horsham Regional Livestock Exchange Manager, Paul Christopher on the opening of the new effluent disposal facility. The project was a delivered by Horsham Rural City Council in partnership with ALRTA and funded by the federal government through the NHVR administered Heavy Vehicle Safety Initiative. The effluent pit is available 24/7.
INTEGRITY SYSTEMS WEBINAR FOR TRANSPORTERS
The foundations of Australia’s red meat integrity system are Livestock Production Assurance (LPA), the National Livestock Identification System (NLIS) and National Vendor Declarations (NVDs).
On Monday 27 July 2020, Integrity Systems Company (ISC), with ALRTA’s support, hosted a webinar for transporters to share information and answer questions about the campaign, ‘We stand by what we sell’. ISC acknowledge that, while livestock producers are responsible for keeping their integrity records in order, transporters have an important role to play. ALRTA was represented on the webinar panel by Graeme Hoare and Athol Carter.
The presentation covered how the integrity system fits within compliance requirements, changes to National Vendor Declarations from 1 July 2020 and NVD completion, and the new mobile friendly, faster and easier eNVD. The Q&A session with the ISC team discussed opening up user access to the NVD system, the NVD audit process, provision of destination PICs, recording of curfew arrangements, the future acceptance of both paper and electronic NVDs and the offline functionality of eNVDs – noting that jurisdictions have different requirements.
ISC recorded the one hour webinar and made it available here.
A follow up animation explains how LPA and NLIS make up the integrity system and through PICs, record keeping and the LPA NVD, underpin customer confidence in Australia’s red meat. This presentation is handy as a resource to explain how the integrity system works.
See the animation ‘Can you stand by what you sell?’ on YouTube by clicking on the following link
ISC welcomes transporter feedback, so please let ALRTA know your views on whether your information needs are being met by ISC and for more information about using the integrity system call the ISC help desk on 1800 683 111.
A truckie is carrying penguins when a police officer pulls him over and says, “What are you doing? You need to take those penguins to the zoo. Here are some directions.”
The next day, the officer sees the same truckie in the same truck carrying more penguins. The officer pulls him over and says, “Didn’t I tell you to take those penguins to the zoo?”
The truckie replies, “I did, and it was a lot of fun! Today I’m taking them to the movies.”
ALRTA STAFF AVAILABILITY AMIDST COVID19
From 24 March 2020 the ALRTA staff – Mathew, Sue, Colleen and Jack have been working from home amidst COVID-19. We are gradually coming back into the office with only one staff member present at a time.
Please email firstname.lastname@example.org or call Colleen on the ALRTA mobile 0490 515 681 or Mathew (ED) on 0421 082 489.
UPDATE ON EVENTS FOR 2020
LRTAWA on 19 September 2020 – Burswood on Swan – Perth WA.
LTAT (TAS) in Hobart TAS – POSTPONED