McCormack faces energised industry when settled in


Manufacturers and peak bodies line up to provide impetus and advice

McCormack faces energised industry when settled in
Michael McCormack signs on

 

New deputy prime minister and the minister for infrastructure and transport Michael McCormack will have a range of policy direction proposals put to him by industry groups looking for lost time to be made up.

Heavy Vehicle Industry Australia (HVIA) chief executive Todd Hacking says the heavy vehicle industry will continue to work closely with the minister who oversees the Department of Infrastructure, Regional Development and Cities and key agencies including the National Heavy Vehicle Regulator (NHVR) and the National Transport Commission (NTC).

"The new Minister comes in at a crucial time when our industry is stretched to the limit to deliver on the Government’s $75 billion infrastructure program," Hacking says.

"We will be seeking to work with the new Minister to support the productivity and safety benefits new technology can bring to these projects.

"Australia is home to three major truck manufacturing plants and hundreds of the world’s most innovative trailer and equipment manufacturers, producing state-of-the-art vehicles designed specifically to cater for the Australian market, utilising safety and emissions technology associated with the highest-end motor vehicles."

HVIA aims to continue advocating for improved productivity and safety by mandating safety technologies on new vehicles and incentivising trucking operators to update their fleet.

"Mandating electronic stability control (ESC) on new heavy trucks would be a life-saver, with the potential to save 148 lives and stop 1,496 serious injuries in the coming years," Hacking says.

"However, realising the productivity and safety benefits will only happen if operators update their vehicles.

"We are the midst of a period of great reform with the Motor Vehicle Standards Act, Australian Design Rules, Road Vehicle Certification Scheme, Performance Based Standards and Australian Vehicle Examiner schemes all on the table.

"This is an exciting time for our industry and we look forward to engaging with the Deputy Prime Minister in his new role."

For its part, the National Road Transport Association (NatRoad) is looking forward to a continuation of the Coalition’s policy stance.

"We warmly welcome Michael McCormack and look forward to continuing discussions focused on a safe, efficient and sustainable road transport industry," NatRoad CEO Warren Clark says.

"Minister McCormack has previously expressed his common-sense approach to the continuous attempts to regulate fixed rates in Australia by the Transport Workers Union and the Labor Party.

"We’re pleased to have the support of a Minister who understands the plight of small trucking business owners and knows the irreparable damage that would be caused by the re-introduction of the RSRT or similar arrangements to set mandated owner driver rates.

"As he rightly mentioned when speaking about the abolition of the RSRT [in Parliament]: ‘(W)e want the government to get out of the way as much as possible from business getting on with the job of moving goods around Australia, getting on with the job of hiring more people.

"This position is applauded by NatRoad and we look forward to delivering this message with the Minister’s assistance.

"We hope to meet with Minister McCormack shortly, to discuss a number of other key issues facing today’s trucking industry, including issues which need urgent attention such as:

  • a lack of national consistency in regulatory requirements and enforcement
  • access restrictions for high productivity vehicles
  • traffic congestion in urban areas.

 

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