Kuehne + Nagel to acquire the Quick Group

The Quick Group has entered into an agreement to be acquired by Kuehne + Nagel, a global logistics company operating in airfreight, seafreight, contract logistics, and overland businesses.
Quick will continue to offer tailor-made solutions to all the industries they serve and will operate as independent specialised product brands: Sterling Aviation, QuickSTAT, Quick Healthcare, and Quick Logistics. The Quick/Sterling team, including management, will continue to support their client base. Unitrans International Logistics will not be part of this transaction.
The partnership will offer Quick’s customers additional service and resource capabilities, with an expanded global footprint within Kuehne + Nagel’s operating network across more than 100 countries.
“We are very excited to become part of the Kuehne + Nagel Group and further expand the services we provide to our customers, with a clear focus on providing integrated logistics solutions with speed, control, communication, and IT efficiencies. We plan to continue leading the industry, providing the very best specialized solutions,” Dominique Bischoff-Brown, CEO, The Quick Group of Companies said.
The closing of the transaction is subject to the satisfaction of customary conditions.
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Linfox, TWU study: transport is dangerous

Transport workers are up to five times more likely to be injured at work than any other Australian worker, according to new Monash research, with rail drivers in particular 30 times more likely to develop a mental health condition than any other worker.
These are just two of many significant findings unearthed in the first report of the National Transport Industry Health and Wellbeing Study, released today by the Insurance Work and Health Group at Monash University.
The research, supported by Linfox Logistics and the Transport Workers Union, comes from the first stage of a detailed national study looking into the health of workers in the transport industry.
The Australian transport and logistic industry is very diverse, and encompasses drivers, logistics, storage and warehousing workers, managers and executives.
Alex Collie, professor and director of the Insurance Work and Health Group, said transport workers were subject to a unique set of health risks in their working environment, including sedentary jobs, long working hours and shift work, isolation, fatigue and sleep deprivation, among others.
“This study presents a national picture of the health of people working in the transport and logistics industry. Prior studies have focused on safety and on specific groups of workers. We used a large and detailed national database of work injury claims to examine a range of different injuries and diseases that affect workers across the whole industry,” Professor Collie said.
“Our ultimate aim is to develop programs and services that can prevent illness and injury in the transport sector, and help people recover and return to work when they become sick.”
There are strong links between people’s health and their ability to work, Professor Collie said, so understanding and improving the health of an industry which employs 1.2 million people is important for the workers, their employers and the Australian economy.
The Transport Workers Union national assistant secretary Michael Kaine said the report’s findings show that the “pressures on transport workers, including long hours away from family, chronic fatigue and the stresses of meeting deadlines, are clearly taking their toll”.
“It should serve as yet another example of the need for a check on the transport supply chain, to ensure that the major clients at the top are being held to account for the pressure they exert on the industry and its workforce,” he said.
Linfox Logistics general manager of HR Lauren Pemberton said working with Monash and TWU to investigate driver health and safety was the “next logical step in improving our staff health programs”.

Linfox invests in health research

Transport and logistics company Linfox is funding a major new research study with Monash University to better understand the health and wellbeing of workers in the industry.
Monash University researcher Professor Alex Collie told Linfox that, while past research has focused on driver fatigue and safety, there have been no large Australian studies of health and wellbeing of workers in the sector.
The Linfox-funded Transport and Logistics Industry Health and Wellbeing Research Study will reportedly seek information on diet, exercise, chronic illness, stress, mental health and other conditions associated with long-haul driving and warehouse operations.

MNX Global Logistics acquires Logical Freight Solutions

Melbourne-based logistics provider to the life sciences industry Logical Freight Solutions (LFS) has accepted an offer to be acquired by global logistics services provider MNX Global Logistics.
“The pace of growth in patient-centric medicine, with its strict requirements for temperature-controlled transportation and time-definite delivery, underscores the role that specialty time-critical logistics providers will continue to play in the life sciences and healthcare industries,” said Paul J. Martins, CEO, MNX. “LFS shares our customer-centric culture and geographic footprint. This combination allows our new and existing customers to experience an expanded suite of logistics services tailored specifically for the healthcare, life sciences, and medical device industries around the world.”
Steve Cheetham, CEO, LFS, is enthusiastic about the potential for the combined business.
“Since its inception, Logical Freight Solutions has steadily built an infrastructure and specialised expertise that provides our customers with true door-to-door service, from internal supplier to end-user,” said Cheetham. “Joining MNX further propels the growth of our business and service offerings across new geographies, and gives our customers access to a diversified range of logistics services and new technologies.”
The acquisition is part of a series of strategic moves to drive global growth and provide exceptional service to healthcare and life sciences customers, LFS said in a statement.

ATO determination concerns for owner-drivers

The Victorian Transport Association (ATA), the Australian Road Transport Industrial Organisation (ARTIO) and the Transport Workers Union TWU) are among industry groups concerned about a recent Australian Taxation Office (ATO) determination that will reduce the amount drivers can claim for travel on their tax returns.
ATO Determination TD 2017/19, issued on 3 July, has reduced the ‘reasonable amount’ that an owner-driver may claim for travel expenses without substantiation by $42.10, which translates to a 43 per cent reduction.
Peter Anderson, CEO, VTA, in his capacity as Secretary and Treasurer of the ARTIO, has written to the ATO to express concern about the lack of consultation with industry about the determination, along with the impact such a significant reduction will have on the individual drivers and their income.
“We are amazed the ATO has made such a far-reaching determination that will leave drivers and their families so significantly out-of-pocket without bothering to inform the industry,” Anderson said.
“Equally concerning are flow-on effects the determination will have on Enterprise Bargaining Agreements (EBAs) that had already factored in the previous rate. We have highlighted to the ATO that employers, who have had EBAs specifying amounts payable in these circumstances approved by the Fair Work Commission, could now be in breach of legal obligations because of the change.
“Regrettably, the impact of the ATO changing its view on what is a ‘reasonable amount’ for a driver to claim for a meal will be on their health and wellbeing because there is less money for them to spend on healthier foods, which usually cost more.”
The ARTIO has requested an urgent meeting with the ATO to discuss the determination, which it feels requires immediate review and amendment.

Australian rail industry celebrates safety awareness day

The Australian and New Zealand rail industries celebrated the third annual Rail R U OK?Day on Thursday, 20 April, with celebrations across Australasia.
The Rail R U OK?Day initiative has been designed to help create a more supportive environment for the rail industry, as rail workers are sometimes exposed to trauma on the job.
The TrackSAFE Foundation has been tackling the issue by encouraging rail workers to deepen workplace conversations and help colleagues open up and support each other.
“Rail R U OK?Day has helped the rail industry proactively address suicide on our networks in an attempt to reduce the number of incidents, while at the same time mitigating the trauma caused to rail employees, families and communities,” said Bob Herbert AM, Chairman, TrackSAFE Foundation. “We strive to create healthy and resilient workplaces by empowering coworkers to support one another and continually check in, asking one simple question – ‘Are you ok?’
“We’re proud to celebrate our third annual industry-wide Rail R U OK? day. It is an important opportunity to convince workmates that they can make a real difference to someone who is struggling by having genuine conversations,” he added.
League legend and R U OK? Ambassador Brett Finch spoke to workers at the event.
“I know about the trauma and tragedy that can happen on Australian rail networks,” he said, prior to the event. “My father-in-law works on the rail and I know first-hand the life changing experiences he’s been through and the impact it has had not only on him, but also his family.
R U OK? CEO Brendan Maher says he is proud of the successful collaboration between TrackSAFE and the suicide prevention charity.
“The R U OK? ethos has really been embraced by rail networks around Australia and more recently New Zealand,” he said. “Rail workers witness some heartbreaking incidents on the job and by supporting each other everyone is better off at work and also at home.
“Rail R U OK? Day is a reminder to all rail workers to check in not just on the big day but anytime someone looks like they’re struggling.”
Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull released a statement on the morning of R U OK?Day:
“So many Australians have been touched by the trauma of suicide – be it the loss of a friend, family member, neighbour or work colleague.
“Each death, with its devastating personal, social and economic impacts, constitutes an awful and unacceptable tragedy that leaves us wondering if we could have done more.
“Sadly, so many of you in this industry know only too well the ripple effect of suicide on the wider community. Being so often the first responders to incidents on the rail, you are well aware of the potential for severe mental, physical and emotional trauma for those involved.
“Given the stressors that rail industry staff are exposed to, it is heartening to see you take steps to create safer, stronger and more supportive workplaces, while addressing the stigma surrounding the mental health impacts of exposure to such incidents.
“This Rail R U Ok? Day I encourage everyone to reach out to colleagues who are doing it tough, to start the conversation about mental health, and to work together to save lives.
“Through coordinated efforts, let us ensure that the years ahead mark a turning point for suicide and poor mental health, as we progress towards creating a more caring and resilient society.”

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