Now might be a good time to start preparing for the return of the RSRT. In the wake of the defeat of the Labor Party at the recent election some people in the industry may be thinking that the plans and minimum rates reforms being spruiked by Senator Sterle and the Transport Workers Union have gone away. They have gone away, for now, but they may well come back.
As an industry we need more than talk when it comes to developing training and accreditation to bring more people into the trucking industry and save it from the generational crunch which is coming. It’s not as if this is a new problem, it has been coming a long time and there has been a lot of talk for a lot of time. Now is the time for action.
There has to be a suspicion that there is some sheer bloody mindedness going on in the corridors of power, the question is where? The problem is the trucking industry has probably got so used to be treated like a second, or even third class citizen that we think it’s normal.
Well it is all over, the Coalition Government has been returned to power and now the transport industry can get back to business as usual. Or so it thinks. For the trucking industry, there were concerns about the return of some form of RSRT, although in recent speeches, Labor’s Senator Glenn Sterle had been working hard to allay fears of a return to the chaotic scenes during the last Labor government.
On the evidence of the latest release by the National Transport Commission, many in trucking could be ploughing through fatigue issues for some time if they want to influence the reformed Heavy Vehicle National Law. The second of eight issues papers has been released this week and amounts to 56 pages of dense data to plough through to grasp the NTC’s intentions.
It is being described as a once in a generation occurrence, the trucking industry has the chance of a lifetime to get the rules to align with reality in trucking. What’s concerning is this chance has come our way and there’s not much in the way of taking up of that opportunity, so far.
Unlike all of the first world trucking industries, Australia has no prospect of seeing government cutting carbon in trucking. In fact, the Australian Federal Government has delayed the introduction of ADR 80/04 to the point where it is about to become irrelevant.
It’s the run-up to a federal election, so promises, promises, promises are what we hear all of the time. The pollies are going around being everybody’s friend and appearing supportive of anyone with a vote.
The next few weeks in the lead up to the Federal Election are probably going to demonstrate to all of us, what an electoral irrelevance we, in the trucking industry, are. The news channels will be raging with claim and counter-claim, untruths and lies.
When looking at the typical car driver’s fear on the road around trucks, it seems the problem is truck drivers are like spiders. Many people know very little about spiders, but have a genuine dread of them and get frightened around them.