A call for the government to mandate the use of telematics in all heavy vehicles has been made by the Australian Logistics Council. It came out with the suggestion after reviewing the outcome of the recent Transport and Infrastructure Council meeting of the country’s transport ministers in Sydney.
The call follows the TIC decision to push forward a series of reforms in the transport industry. The states have been set the task of coming up with reform options, following the publication of the National Freight and Supply Chain Strategy as part of, what the TIC is calling, Heavy Vehicle Road Reform (HVRR).
“Improving the efficiency and safety of our supply chains is a vital national economic priority,” said Lachlan Benson, ALC’s Interim CEO. “If Australia is going to meet its growing freight task and remain internationally competitive, then we must ensure the regulatory frameworks around freight movement reflect modern realities and allow this industry to meet customer’s expectations.
“We now need a definitive reform timeline to be established and adhered to, and for industry to be given its opportunity to comment on acknowledged critical matters including location-based charging, elements of a forward-looking cost base and the ambit of community service obligations. It is also crucial that the review of the Heavy Vehicle National Law (HVNL) set to be undertaken by the National Transport Commission delivers the right outcomes.
“In ALC’s view, this review offers the perfect opportunity to mandate the use of telematics in all heavy vehicles. No one can credibly dispute the capacity such technology has to save lives on our roads, and the technology is becoming more affordable each day. Delaying mandatory telematics is needlessly putting lives at risk on our roads.”
At the same time the ALC is looking for the review to drive the establishment of a consistent national form of accreditation for heavy vehicle operators. It also stated any reform should include requiring operators to have the financial capacity to maintain their fleets to the required standard, and to adopt a uniform safety management system.