Infrastructure Charges, ITS Funding, Load Restraint Curtains and Operation Catapult

Infrastructure Charges, ITS Funding, Load Restraint Curtains and Operation Catapult

Apart from Infrastructure Charges, ITS Funding, Load Restraint Curtains and Operation Catapult, Diesel News also reports on ATA elections and fatigue research.


Infrastructure Charges, ITS Funding, Load Restraint Curtains and Operation Catapult


Port operator, DP World, has come in for a barrage of flak this week after the imposition of an bed ‘infrastructure charge’ applying to all full containers received or delivered via road or rail at its Sydney container terminal. Full containers received or delivered via road are to be charged to the road carrier through the 1 stop vehicle booking system.


DP World cite the introduction of competition, privatisation and the consolidation of the shipping industry as reasons for introducing the charge. The company claim,since 2013, its costs of occupancy have increased 30 per cent, including the cost of council rates, land tax, rent and terminal infrastructure maintenance. It has also stated it has to invest in infrastructure to keep pace with expected growth, and greater peaks and troughs in cargo arrival patterns.



The intelligent transport systems (ITS) industry is to see the establishment of a co-operative research centre, to be called iMove CRC. The Federal Government is offering a group of nearly fifty industry and research organisations a total of $55 million over ten years to explore ITS including self-drive vehicles.


“This is a very significant announcement for the logistics sector in Australia,” said Michael Kilgariff, Australian Logistic Council Managing Director. “There is no doubt that rapidly evolving technology will change the way that we transport goods in the future. Initiatives such as the iMove CRC will be crucial in ensuring we can effectively harness today’s intellectual capital and industry experience to design sustainable transport systems for tomorrow.”



Trucking operators across Australia can start voting to elect the owner driver and small fleet representatives on the General Council of the Australian Trucking Association. The Independent Returning Officer for the election, Phil Potterton, said that three candidates would contest the owner driver position, while two candidates would contest the small fleet position.


The candidates for the owner driver position are:

  • John Beer from Romsey, Victoria,
  • Frank Black (Arcidiaco) from Archerfield, Queensland,
  • Gordon Mackinlay from Holbrook, New South Wales.


The candidates for the small fleet position are:

  • Lynley Miners from Adaminaby, New South Wales, and
  • Leigh Smart from Melrose Park, New South Wales.


Candidate statements will be available to registered voters with their online ballot papers, and can also be accessed from the ATA website. Registered voters will be emailed their secure voting link and they will have three weeks to cast their votes. The election will be conducted entirely online, meaning there will be no delay waiting for ballot papers to arrive in the post.



A workshop, as part of the $828,000 investment in a Heavy Vehicle Driver Fatigue Project, has seen the Australian Livestock and Rural Ttransporters Association make a presentation on behalf of the ALRTA and ATA stressing any new research must be based on a measured, logical approach. According to the association, part of the proposed research design goes beyond the Ministerial mandate to compare the fatigue risk of nose-to-tail shifts with conventional work patterns.


Some enforcement authorities who would like to see an immediate end to nose-to-tail shifts, are misinterpreting the findings of existing fatigue research, says the ALRTA. The research being cited to support their case actually applies to drivers working beyond 12 hours in a normal shift. This is simply not applicable to a driver undertaking a nose-to-tail shift that includes a seven hour major rest break between the 12th and 13th hour of work in a 24hr period.


“While we can support government funded research that examines whether or not nose-to-tail shifts do in fact represent a significant fatigue risk, we do not want to see taxpayer money spent examining solutions to a problem that may not even exist,” said an ALRTA statement.



An enforcement blitz in the Sydney area, known as ‘Operation Catapult’, has seen truck working on the West Connex project being stopped and checked by NSW Police. Police statements about the operation reckon major safety breaches and defects have been discovered in a large number of trucks.


The statements from the Police also reckoned a number of bikie gangs are involved in the transport for the project. The trucks involved had been contracted to haul soil and debris spoil from the West Connex construction sites.



The ATA has released a new Technical Advisory Procedure (TAP) on certified load restraint curtain systems (CLRC). This TAP was developed by the Industry Technical Council, (ITC) a committee within the ATA.


“This TAP has been developed with extensive input from both industry experts and enforcement offices from across Australia,” said Chris Loose, ATA Senior Adviser of Engineering. “It was developed as a result of gaps in guidance identified within the 2nd edition of the Load Restraint Guidelines (LRG). It is expected that the TAP will feed into the review of the Guide currently underway by the National Transport Commission.”


The main purpose of this TAP is to provide operators and inspectors with guidance to ensure a common understanding of how to demonstrate compliance to the performance standard detailed in the 2nd Edition of the LRG when load rated curtains form part of the load restraint system.


“It is not intended to be a comprehensive guide for restraining loads. This TAP also provides some basic information to manufacturers of CLRC systems on certification, modification, retrofitting and repairs. Understanding this information is critical for trucking operators to perform at their best”.