NHVR welcomes new SA Transport & Infrastructure Minister

The National Heavy Vehicle Regulator (NHVR) has welcomed the appointment of Stephan Knoll as South Australian Transport and Infrastructure Minister.
NHVR Chair, Bruce Baird, looked forward to working with Knoll and the incoming South Australian government to deliver ongoing services to the state’s heavy vehicle industry.
“The incoming Marshall government has made announcements in relation to the movement of freight and I look forward to working with them to boost productivity for the local heavy vehicle industry,” said Baird.
“The NHVR has a close working relationship with South Australian transport and police agencies and we will continue to develop those relationships in the years ahead.
“I congratulate Stephan on behalf of the NHVR staff and board, and look forward to working with him to deliver an on-going agenda to reform heavy vehicle safety and productivity.”
Knoll will replace outgoing Minister, Stephen Mullighan, as a Minister responsible for the NHVR in South Australia.

ALC announces 2018 Forum speakers

Anthony Albanese, Shadow Minister for Infrastructure & Transport, is among a number of prominent individuals who will speak at the Australian Logistics Council’s (ALC) national freight and supply chain event, ALC Forum 2018.
Following the successful 2017 event, which was held in the Melbourne Cricket Ground, in 2018,  the Forum returns to Sydney’s Royal Randwick, taking place 6-8 March.
Other speakers for ALC Forum 2018 include:
• Brendan Bourke, CEO, Port of Melbourne;
• Chris Bresnahan, Operations Director – E-commerce Delivery, Australia Post;
• Royce Christie, General Manager – Government Relations, Toll Group;
• Paul Graham, Supply Chain – Chief Supply Chain Officer, Woolworths Group;
• Maurice James, Managing Director, Qube Holdings;
• Anthony Jones, CEO, LINX Cargo Care Group;
• Sal Petroccitto, CEO, National Heavy Vehicle Regulator;
• Melinda Pavey, Minister for Roads, Maritime and Freight (New South Wales);
• Paul Retter, CEO and Commissioner, National Transport Commission; and,
• Richard Sellers, Director General, Department of Transport (Western Australia).
The ALC said that ALC Forum 2018 will progress the issues put forward by ALC members in the final submission, focusing on the freight logistics industry’s priorities and expectations for the types of infrastructure investment and policy reform required to enhance national supply chain efficiency and safety.

Last chance to attend 2017 CCF Summit and Awards

Time is running out to register for the 2017 CCF Australian Infrastructure Summit and National Earth Awards Gala Dinner, which takes place in Canberra 21 – 22 November.
The event gives delegates unique insight into the major developments taking place in the civil construction space, bolstered by a range of industry speakers and a full summit program including:
*Opening presentation by the Hon Darren Chester MP, Federal Minister for Infrastructure and Transport
* Launch of the 2017-2018 CCF Infrastructure Report
* National Infrastructure Construction Schedule (NICS)
* CLARA’s ‘Smart City Project’
* NHVR’s ‘Heavy Vehicle Permit AccessCONNECT Program
* Australian Rail Track Corporation’s ‘Inland Rail Project
Attendees can view the full Summit program, and register for the event and the 2017 CCF National Earth Awards Gala Dinner – recognising excellence in civil construction projects across Australia – here.

Industry speakers announced for CCF Summit

The Civil Contractors Federation (CCF) has announced the key individuals and business leaders set to speak at its 2017 Australian Infrastructure Summit this November.
The event will be held in Canberra on 20-21 November at the QT Hotel, with presenters comprising representatives from some of Australia’s leading corporations and government bodies, including:

  • Nick Cleary, Chairman, CLARA
  • Marc Allen, Programme Commercial Manager, Australian Rail Track Corporations
  • Sal Petroccitto, CEO, NHVR
  • Andrew Brown, Sales Director ANZ, PelicanCorp
  • John Murray AM, Australian Governments Security of Payments Legislation Review
  • Colonel Matt Galton, Director of the North Program, Capital Facilities and Infrastructure

The event also incorporates the launch of the 2017 Australia Infrastructure Outlook Report with Adrian Hart, Senior Economist, Infrastructure and Mining, BIS Shrapnel at the CCF Infrastructure Outlook Breakfast, which includes an address from Federal Minister for Infrastructure and Transport Darren Chester.
The Summit will play host to one of Australia’s most prestigious civil construction awards night – the CCF National Earth Awards, which recognises excellence in civil construction projects throughout Australia.
For more additional program and speaker information, and to register, go to the Summit website.

Government targets heavy vehicle safety

The National Heavy Vehicle Regulator (NHVR) has commissioned an independent review into heavy vehicle accreditation schemes.
NHVR CEO Sal Petroccitto said the independent review would inform future structural and operational improvements in the schemes.
“Heavy vehicle accreditation schemes have proven benefits for road safety across a number of heavy vehicle sectors, including trucks, cranes and buses,” Mr Petroccitto said.
“The national roadworthiness survey released earlier this year showed major non-conformities for vehicles in accreditation schemes dropped from 13 per cent to nine per cent.
“That said, I believe it is time to independently review the systems and processes to ensure they deliver the future safety outcomes our growing industry requires.
“The review will look at a range of factors, including governance and oversight, rules and standards, as well as examining associated assurance activities.
“I’ve also asked for feedback on the safety merits of requiring operators that sub-contract on government infrastructure projects to be accredited.”
The review will kick off with a marketplace scan to identify the best practice approach for accreditation schemes, and identify inconsistencies that exist between schemes.
The independent review will examine schemes such as Western Australian Heavy Vehicle Accreditation and the NHVR’s National Heavy Vehicle Accreditation Scheme, as well as industry schemes such as TruckSafe. The review will also take into account relevant experience from overseas.
The independent review will be conducted by transport expert Peter Medlock and is expected to take up to eight weeks to complete.
Mr Petroccitto welcomed the support of Transport and Infrastructure Minister Darren Chester who recently outlined several key investments to improve heavy vehicle safety.
ATA on board
“Thank you to the Minister for Infrastructure and Transport, Darren Chester, for listening to our calls to review truck safety accreditation programs,” chairman of the Australian Trucking Association Geoff Crouch said.
“Operators, industry, government and regulators need to work together on truck safety.
“Recognising safe practices should not be an unbalanced competition between government and industry like the ATA’s TruckSafe program.
“By working together we give the public and industry customers the confidence that heavy vehicle operators are meeting strict standards.
“It does not help road safety when the government accreditation program, the National Heavy Vehicle Accreditation Scheme (NHVAS), is not as comprehensive as the industry’s own program in TruckSafe.
More than 800 operators have invested to meet rigorous standards over the years, yet participants do not receive the same regulatory benefits as NHVAS operators, Mr Crouch said.
“This independent review will give TruckSafe a chance to demonstrate its value to road safety and the trucking industry.
“We will be making the case for credible accreditation programs like TruckSafe to be recognised by governments as being effective and rigorous on safety.
“TruckSafe is everything governments should want to see; an industry led solution, adapted over 20 years, independently audited and giving operators a competitive choice.
“Operators should have choice, clarity and confidence when choosing a program to recognise their safety practices,” Mr Crouch said.

NSW freight minister welcomes CoR changes

NSW minister for roads, maritime and freight Melinda Pavey has thrown her support behind proposed interstate changes to the National Heavy Vehicle Regulator’s (NHVR) Chain of Responsibility (CoR).
The Australian Logistics Council (ALC) and the Australian Trucking Association (ATA) have submitted joint notices of intention to the regulator to develop an industry-wide ‘Master Code’ that is hoped to enhance heavy-vehicle safety.
Introduced at the 2017 ALC Compliance Summit in Sydney, the new code of conduct is hoped to extend the legal obligations for safe road transit of executive officers and company directors right across the supply chain.
Speaking at the summit on Tuesday, Pavey described the number of deaths on state roads annually as “unacceptable,” insisting that zero should be the only acceptable target.
“I strongly support the introduction of a fair regime for the Chain of Responsibility as I believe it delivers on road safety,” Pavey said. “We have advocated a common start date of 1 July 2018 for various Chain of Responsibility reforms for various industry and regulator education.
“We know there is a lot to do and one of the things is the issue of improving and enhancing the quality of heavy vehicles, encouraging that investment.
“One of the ways that we need to do that is to have good conversations with local councils around Sydney and explain to them that a higher-capacity heavy vehicle can also be a safer heavy vehicle.”
Freight is a $60 billion industry in Australia and employs close to 500,000 people, directly or indirectly.
Industry forecasts anticipate freight volumes will almost double to 794 million tonnes by 2031 and is said to be one of the major factors when considering safety.
A Master Code will effectively hold all parties of the supply chain accountable for breaches of road transport, mass dimension loading, speed compliance and work-hour laws.
“Freight is important to the state and I am constantly reminding people that I am not only the roads minister but also minister for roads, maritime and freight, and they are all of equal importance,” Pavey continued.
“I am honoured to be minister at a time when our government in New South Wales is investing in historic levels of freight infrastructure to ensure the transit and transfer of goods on our network is smooth and, above all, safe.
“And that is not without its challenges, at this time. We have seen an increase in heavy-vehicle incidents and fatalities over recent months and it is important that we look at those statistics.”
The minister said that road users are five times more likely to die in a crash in regional New South Wales than in metropolitan areas, with 10 fatalities for every 100,000 people.
In the city, an average of two people for every 100,000 people die on the roads. The divide, Pavey says, is similar to statistics recorded in the US.
“I am often told that this is not an achievable task and will never happen but we must work towards zero,” the minister said. “The New South Wales road toll isn’t only a number – it is people and is closer to home than you may think.
“It is a number that is unacceptable however small it is until that number gets to zero. How many fatalities would you, as operators, be willing to accept in your company each year?
“Under the Chain of Responsibility, complying with transport law is a shared responsibility where all parties in the road transport supply chain are responsible for preventing breaches.
“We should be working together to push the number of deaths on New South Wales roads towards zero and I will, however, recognise the work of industry to achieve this.”

Toowoomba aiming to become heavy transport capital

Toowoomba has been supported in its push to be the nation's heavy transport hub, with the proposed establishment of the National Heavy Vehicle Regulator's head office.

Chamber of Commerce and Industry Queensland south west regional manager Roger Gorrel said the move to set up the national headquarters in Toowoomba had great merit.

It came after State Opposition Leader Annastacia Palasczuk said it made sense that the headquarters should be outside the south-east corner because most heavy vehicle activity was taking place in regional Queensland.

"It is a great opportunity for the region to be seen as a transport hub," Gorrel said.

He went on to say that Toowoomba already had a sufficient volume of heavy vehicle traffic to warrant being the independent national regulatory body's headquarters.

A Lockyer Valley heavy transport company boss, who did not want to be named, stated that “for the Toowoomba economy, it would be a bit of a godsend really.”

The new National Heavy Vehicle Regulator will be established from January 1 next year, reports The Chronicle.

It will be an autonomous body responsible for regulating all vehicles in Australia larger than 4.5 tonnes.

The body will be established under the Heavy Vehicle National Law Bill 2012 which was passed in the State Parliament last month.

It will have a Queensland base, which could be controlled from Brisbane or other regional centres that include Ipswich, Rockhampton, Mackay or Townsville.

Under the regulatory goals, the body will have a common set of laws for heavy vehicles for all states and territories, a national safety monitoring and reporting system, nationalised registration system along with providing fast responses to industry needs and being a single point of contact for heavy vehicle regulation. 

Progress report from the National Heavy Vehicle Regulator

Planning is well underway to establish a national heavy vehicle regulator that makes a real improvement to the efficiency of Australia’s freight task from January 2013, according to Richard Hancock, project director for the National Heavy Vehicle Regulator (NHVR) Project Office, based in Brisbane.


Mr Hancock made the comment as an 18-date national consultation round on the draft heavy vehicle national law and related Regulatory Impact Statement (RIS) nears its conclusion. These sessions have been attended by industry participants across Australia.


Mr Hancock said planning underway will develop the precise detail of the ‘how’ and there were already key areas identified where the NHVR would improve business efficiency.


“Operators currently have to apply to each individual road owner when seeking approval for a freight task beyond general access. For interstate movements, this can involve multiple state and local governments and take a lot of time that the operator can do without.


“In the future, it’s proposed that this be replaced with just one application going to the NHVR, which would then coordinate assessment of the application with the road owners and deliver one permit to the operator.


“In compliance and enforcement, it’s proposed that there be one set of national enforcement guidelines rather than the suite of them we have now which will lead to the same enforcement outcome in the same circumstance, wherever it happens in the country.


“With vehicle registration, it’s proposed that there be one national portal through which transactions could be made and agreed national pre-registration requirements.


“And with vehicle standards, it’s proposed that there be one national set of guidelines to interpret standards and also mutual recognition of defect clearance to reduce downtime of vehicles defected in one state, but based in another.


“It’s efficiency gains like this that will contribute to the significant benefit that the NHVR is expected to deliver.”


And while the national law is nearing its finalisation ahead of being put to the nation’s transport ministers for approval later this year, Mr Hancock said there had been and would continue to be a lot more engagement and consultation between now and when the regulator opens its doors for business in 2013.


“We have had two dedicated industry forums on shaping the national heavy vehicle regulator since September last year in Newcastle and Melbourne, had a number of meetings and workshops to identify and work through practical operational issues.


“We plan to continue being active in meeting with heavy vehicle operators and users of the road freight system long after the current round of consultation on the draft national law to make sure we are aware of the real issues that need addressing and developing solutions to them.


“I’d strongly encourage anyone who wants to keep informed of progress towards the national heavy vehicle regulator to get along to the remaining forums on the draft law and RIS and to go our website and subscribe to receive our e-newsletter and regular updates.”


Mr Hancock said he was also aware that there have been a number of submissions made by various to previous consultation processes suggesting improvements in heavy vehicle regulation in Australia.


“We encourage people to let us know about all those good ideas that are still relevant so where possible, we can incorporate them into the shape of regulator.


“We won’t be able to address all issues from day one, but we’re certainly throwing all we’ve got at getting a regulator in place that makes a real difference from the day it opens for business, and that acts as a platform for faster resolution of outstanding matters and new issues as they arise”, Mr Hancock said.

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