ATA spotlights safety measures in senate inquiry submission

Association points to 'unacceptable' road transport casualties

ATA spotlights safety measures in senate inquiry submission
Geoff Crouch


The Australian Trucking Association (ATA) has called for urgent action to improve industry safety in its submission to the Senate road transport inquiry, with a priority on safer roads, better rest areas and improved driver training.

It calls on governments to implement practical safety measures immediately to combat the unacceptable number of fatal and serious injury crashes involving trucks. 

"The only acceptable number of crashes is zero," ATA Chair Geoff Crouch says. 

"The trucking industry, drivers, governments and regulators have made progress in reducing the number of articulated truck crashes, however the total number of fatal crashes involving heavy rigid trucks is increasing. Action must be taken."

The ATA submission has outlined the importance of implementing practical safety measures such as:

  • building safer roads and improving truck rest areas
  • mandating autonomous emergency braking for all new trucks and extending the electronic stability control requirement to all new rigid trucks
  • improving driver training and licensing
  • regulating freight matching platforms to ensure they are subject to chain of responsibility under the Heavy Vehicle National Law (HVNL), and
  • implementing no-blame safety investigations for heavy vehicle crashes. 

"These actions would deliver safer roads, safer vehicles, safer people and safer systems and companies," Crouch says. 

How the senate inquiry and HVNL review dominated WA discourse, here

Crouch adds the submission also called for improved industry consultation and boosts to productivity. 

"Improvements to productivity can be made through encouraging the use of High Productivity Freight Vehicles and implementing a mandatory code of payment terms in the trucking industry," he adds. 

The ATA however advises against re-establishing a Road Safety Remuneration Tribunal (RSRT). 

"Independent inquiries have found regulating rates of pay for owner drivers does not improve safety. Governments should not repeat the mistakes of the failed RSRT," Crouch says.

The full submission is available here.

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