Hino adds free sat nav to 300 Series

Hino Australia is offering the added bonus of free satellite navigation and reversing camera in every new 300 Series light-duty truck purchased between February 1 and April 30 this year.*

The Hino-Navteq truck-specific sat nav and sound-enabled infrared night vision reversing camera – normally plug-in options for Hino’s market-leading multimedia unit – are being included as part of a special 300 Series promotion.

According to Hino Australia’s Alex Stewart, the no-cost addition of these special features makes the 300 Series even better value.

“The 300 Series is already one of the most user-friendly and comfortable trucks on the road, and these extra accessories only add to its appeal and safety,” he said. “With safety of utmost importance at Hino, we’re making the most of technologies that improve a driver’s ability to conduct their job more effectively.”

The unique Hino-Navteq navigation system can be tailored to suit each individual truck or load, with the ability to input critical data such as the truck’s height, weight and dangerous goods classification. The system then calculates a route that avoids low bridges, weight-restricted roads and dangerous goods-restricted areas. It can also direct the driver using any one of 17 different languages.

The reversing camera is displayed on the multimedia unit’s 6.1-inch high-definition LCD display, and can be optioned with up to two additional cameras offering split screen viewing if required.

Hino Australia became the first truck manufacturer in the world to include a digital audio broadcast (DAB+) multimedia unit as standard equipment across its entire range last year. The multimedia unit features the large 6.1-inch high-definition LCD touch-screen, DAB+ digital radio and conventional AM/FM radio. It also includes a CD and DVD player, USB and SD input, Bluetooth™ audio streaming and hands-free phone with voice and one-touch dialling.

* Terms and conditions apply. See www.hino.com.au for more details.


Stobart orders 1000 Scanias

Leading British trucking firm, Eddie Stobart, has in partnership with A. W. Jenkinson Forest Products signed a joint-procurement agreement with Scania in the UK for the supply of 1000 trucks. The deal mirrors the order placed by the two haulage operators in 2010, which at the time represented Scania’s largest ever supply agreement in the UK.

With the entire order scheduled for delivery between March 2012 and December 2013, approximately 300 units are expected to enter service this year. As with the previous order, the vehicle mix will comprise mostly R-series prime movers but will also include a number of the smaller G-series units.

Eddie Stobart, part of Stobart Group, is one of the most recognised road haulage fleets in Britain. The company currently operates a fleet of some 2280 units with a focus on optimum vehicle utilisation in order to maximise efficiencies and environmental benefits.

“This agreement reflects our ongoing satisfaction with Scania and the levels of support provided by the company’s dealer network,” Stobart Group chief operating officer William Stobart said. “Scania’s focus on ongoing development will allow our company to continue providing sustainable distribution and the usual high levels of service to its customers.”

According to Hans-Christer Holgersson, managing director of Scania (Great Britain) Limited, over the past two years the partnership between Eddie Stobart, A. W. Jenkinson and Scania has continued to strengthen.

“Winning such a significant repeat order not only demonstrates that our products meet the operational needs of these two high profile customers day-in, day-out, it also underlines the capabilities of our service organisation when it comes to providing a comprehensive range of back-up services on a relatively large geographical scale.”

A.W. Jenkinson Forest Products and its subsidiaries haul over two million tonnes of green waste, roundwood, chips, sawdust, bark and other timber by-products each year, collected from forestry sites, sawmills and other wood processing industries throughout the UK. The company is the largest supplier of woodchip and bark products in Great Britain.

In 2011, Scania’s share of the UK heavy truck market was 14 percent and its combined bus and coach market share amounted to 8.1 percent.



‘Tangles’ to host 2012 NatRoad conference

Max ‘Tangles’ Walker has been engaged to officiate proceedings at this year’s NatRoad conference to be held at Sanctuary Cove on the Gold Coast from August 2nd to 4th.

A man of many talents, ‘Tangles’ is a former Australian cricketer, AFL player and architect. These days he is best known as a media commentator, motivational speaker and author of 14 books including seven number one best-sellers.

Max’s wit and humour, as well as his keen professionalism, promise to add volumes to NatRoad’s premier event this year.

Key topics to be covered at the conference include the National Heavy Vehicle Regulator, the Road Safety Remuneration Bill 2011 and the New Model Work Health and Safety Laws.

For more details and regular updates, check out the NatRoad website at www.natroad.com.au.


Register now for free entry to ITTES

Exhibitors and the general public can now register for free entry to the 2012 International Truck, Trailer & Equipment Show (ITTES) by visiting www.trucktrailershow.com.au.

Claimed to be the largest heavy-duty transport show in the southern hemisphere – with almost 400 exhibitors including every major truck manufacturer taking part – the event will be held at the Melbourne Showgrounds from Thursday, March 15 to Saturday, March 17.

Pre-registration also entitles visitors entry into the Friday night concert featuring Jon Stevens, the lead vocalist of Sydney rock band Noiseworks, and one-time Australian Idol runner up, Shannon Noll, supported by the up-and-coming Josh Owen Band.

To find out more about the ITTES, call Sally Ingram on (03) 9690 7022 or email sally.ingram@trucktrailershow.com.au.



Sharp rise in single vehicle truck crashes

National Transport Insurance (NTI) has indicated the number of single vehicle truck accidents involving rollovers or running off the road more than doubled from July to October last year compared with the same period in 2010.

According to NTI chief executive Tony Clark, the revelation should serve as a wake-up call for everyone in road transport during the return to full swing after the Christmas/ New Year break.

“NTI prides itself on working together with the trucking industry to create safer roads around Australia– not just for truck drivers but for all road users,” Tony Clark said.

“We urge all truck operators to continue their focus on driver management and vehicle maintenance, to ensure fatigue and other risk factors do not put the driver, or other road users, at greater risk.”

NTI’s 2011 Major Accident Investigation Report, released recently by the National Truck Accident Research Centre, reported that fatigue and inappropriate speed were responsible for almost 50 percent of all serious truck accidents.

“I encourage all truck operators, from fleet managers to owner-drivers, to read a copy of the report to ensure they are aware of the latest trends and causes of serious truck accidents,” Clark concluded.

ATA’s push for lower A-trailer charge

ATA chief executive Stuart St Clair

The Australian Trucking Association (ATA) is pressing on with its quest for a significant reduction in the registration cost for lead or ‘A’ trailers in B-double combinations. It claims the annual registration charge for a tri-axle A-trailer has increased from $1065 in 2007-08 to $6525 in 2011-12.

The focus of the ATA’s investigation is a consultation paper released by the National Transport Commission (NTC) last December outlining four options for reducing the registration charges on A-trailers.

According to ATA chief executive Stuart St Clair, the massive increase in registration charges has regrettably forced some truck operators to relinquish the use of B-doubles.

“B-doubles are safer than conventional combinations due to their design which provides a high level of roll stability,” Stuart said. “They also have the latest safety features such as ABS, and B-double drivers are licensed to a higher standard.”

“Furthermore, B-doubles can carry significantly more freight than a standard semi-trailer, which reduces the number of heavy vehicles on the road. This, in turn, reduces the number of accidents, and the amount of fuel needed to manage a given freight task.

“The charging system should encourage truck operators to use high productivity vehicles, not punish them for investing in the latest, and safest, truck combinations.

“Our policy team is reviewing the figures in the NTC consultation paper. We have also asked a series of technical follow up questions as we work to lodge a submission in response to the paper.”

How ‘Lo’ can you go?


'Wanted': Never mind a leather interior, this beast has hide on the outside.

Western Star is set to display a stunningly customised 4900EX Lo Max aptly named ‘Wanted’ at this year’s International Truck, Trailer & Equipment Show (ITTES). The show will be held on three days from March 15 to 17 at the Melbourne showgrounds at Ascot Vale.

‘Wanted’ was created by a team of custom design specialists in the US for last year’s Mid America truck show using the ‘Wild West’ theme for inspiration.

Seemingly no amount of customisation was deemed too outlandish. For instance, never mind a leather interior, this beast has the hide on the outside with fishnet-finish leather wrapped fuel tanks masquerading as saddle bags, complete with buckles and straps, along with studded leather-clad side steps, toolboxes and 22-inch deep front bumper. Taking pride of place in the bumper’s centre is a massive cog shaped ‘belt buckle’ featuring the Western Star logo.

Highlighting the immaculate custom paint job are intricate scrollwork designs etched into polished metal components including wheel rims, air cleaner cans, muffler heat shields, roof-mounted air deflector sides and rear mudguard embellishment strips.

Completing the exterior picture is a matching pair of unique ‘double-barrel’ exhaust stacks, pointing skyward as though poised to fire a volley of warning shots.  

The ‘Wanted’ truck’s cab interior, which has not been altered from factory specs, showcases Western Star’s new interior  featuring all-new timber cabinets and table, as well as ‘prairie tan’ coloured upholstery, dashboard and door trims.

Typically, Western Star’s show trucks are pre-purchased by a dealer or customer, who takes possession after the truck has been on show. However, due to its immense popularity, Western Star has held onto ‘Wanted’ longer than usual to allow show-goers across the globe the opportunity to see this sensational Star in the flesh.

The company stresses that ‘Wanted’ was built expressly as a show truck and the Lo Max model is not available in Australia.


BBS bulks up with PBS approved A-doubles

Broadbent Bulk Services (BBS) has called on the expertise of leading trailer manufacturer Freighter to design and build A-double combinations capable of delivering vast productivity improvements operating under PBS (Performance Based Standards).

Having started as a bulk grain container packing facility servicing south-east Queensland and northern NSW, Toowoomba-based BBS moved into road transport following the acquisition of Findlay Bulk Haulage in March 2007. The subsequent ability to offer the full logistics service has seen demand for its services skyrocket.

To effectively meet this demand, BBS operations manager Shane Noble was drawn to the idea of the A-double combination.

“I’d seen an A-double combination running with a steerable dolly, but discovered the steerable dolly made the price exorbitant,” Shane said. “So I thought there must be a better solution and went about finding a manufacturer who shared this view.

“Several companies I approached weren’t willing to go through the PBS approval process and just wanted to sell me another trailer ‘off the shelf’,” he continued. “Eric Ey at Freighter Maxi-CUBE, on the other hand, was only too happy to help and managed the whole process from start to finish.”

“Our engineering team had told us that a steerable dolly didn’t really change the performance of the A-double trailer combination,” commented Eric Ey, Freighter Maxi-CUBE’s westernQueenslandarea manager. “In fact, changing from a steerable dolly to a regular dolly eliminated a few problems for us such as excessive tyre wear and poor performance on rough roads. To us, the steerable dolly seemed to be an unnecessary and ongoing expense, so it was just a matter of waiting for the right customer willing to put the theory into practice.

“BBS came to us wanting two sets of A-double skels without steerable dollies,” Eric continued. “That was the first challenge, but we already had our idea for a solution to that. The second request was to use a Kenworth T909 prime mover. A lot of people said you couldn’t use a bonneted truck to haul an A-double, so Shane’s request gave us the opportunity to prove two industry myths wrong!”

The Freighter engineering team went to work on creating a workable solution for BBS, designing a lightweight trailer set incorporating a regular dolly instead of a steerable dolly and using wider axle spacings on both the skels and dolly to cater for the bonneted prime mover.

“Of course with PBS applications you have to factor in more than just the trailer configuration,” Eric added. “The truck weight and specifications are involved too, as well as reaching certain benchmarks with regards to performance, such as acceleration ability, ability to maintain speed up a hill, swept paths, frontal and tail swing, amongst other things. Our solution got through the entire approval process without a hitch.”

The end result was a light tare A-double with a regular dolly that can carry two full 29 tonne containers and still fall within the 79 tonne gross weight limit specified for the route between Toowoomba and the Port of Brisbane.

“On a higher mass route they could haul two 32 tonne containers which is a huge load by any measure,” Eric enthused. “What’s more, roll stability is just as good with the regular dolly as with a steerable dolly, without the added cost.”

When the PBS process was completed and the trailers delivered, Shane Noble couldn’t have been happier.

“The trailers are a huge success,” he lauded. “Not only are they achieving the payloads we were hoping for, but the final price was even more affordable than we’d envisaged.”





The Freighter A-double carries two full 29 tonne containers, or four empties.

Dana and Eaton end association

Dana Holding Corporation and Eaton Corporation have jointly announced the cessation of their marketing relationship by the middle of 2012.

Eaton says it will continue to provide field service and support for all Eaton and Dana products under the Roadranger brand through to the middle of 2012, after which Dana is expected to have systems in place to effectively service and support its customers independently.

“Going to market independently will afford Dana greater opportunity to communicate with customers directly and to better understand their needs,” said Mark Wallace, president of Dana’s on-highway driveline technologies business. “This closer, direct relationship with customers will, in turn, provide the foundation for innovation and technology in Dana’s core axle, driveshaft, wheel end and tyre management systems.”

According to Tim Sinden, president of Eaton’s truck operations inNorth America, “Eaton intends to continue operating the Roadranger marketing organisation as it has in the past, focused exclusively on serving its customers.”

ATA seeks legal advice on national truck law


ATA policy manager, David Coonan.

The Australian Trucking Association (ATA) has commissioned follow up legal advice on how to fix the liability of business managers and directors under the new national truck laws.

According to the ATA, under draft laws before the Queensland parliament, company directors and executives, business partners and the managers of unincorporated trucking businesses are all presumed at fault if their business is found guilty of chain of responsibility offences.
They must then prove their innocence, even though one of the fundamental principles of Australia’s legal system is that people are presumed innocent until proven guilty.
ATA policy manager, David Coonan, said the legal advice would propose a tough but fair approach to chain of responsibility.
“The legal advice will put forward changes to the law so directors and company officers are innocent of chain of responsibility offences until proven guilty. But they will also have a positive duty to ensure their business complies with the law, which will strengthen their responsibility for road safety whether they run a trucking business or are one of the industry’s customers,” David said.
The legal advice will also propose changes to ensure access to decisions made by road managers are subject to a merits-based appeal process.
“All too often, road managers like local councils refuse to issue truck access permits for reasons that are inconsistent or unclear,” he added. “What’s needed is an appeals process with an independent tribunal.
“It’s the only way we can secure the productivity gains expected to flow from the national truck laws, because those gains depend heavily on better road access,” Coonan concluded.