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NSW must lift game on HML, industry says

NSW warned of operator exodus from IAP unless HML process is overhauled

By Brad Gardner

NSW is being told to overhaul its higher mass limits regime or face the prospect of trucking companies fleeing the Intelligent Access Program.

Less than two weeks before IAP’s implementation date, the trucking industry says the current process of denying access to detailed HML maps until a trucking company has enrolled in IAP is counter-productive and must change.

Troy Heavy Haulage Operations Manager Allen Penberton says the company has no plans to enrol in IAP because the Government’s decision to withhold HML maps means there is no certainty as to where a vehicle can travel.

“I’m not going to spend a heap of money to put GPS in the truck and then find out I can’t go there,” Penberton says.

“It [the process] should be the other way around to see if it [IAP] is worth it.”

Newly-announced IAP provider Transport Compliance Services (TCS) is just as critical, saying the restriction is causing potential clients to question whether to become enrolled in the scheme.

“We would like to see the NSW Government open up the information on routes,” TCS Chief Executive Ian Pendlebury says.

Unless the Government acts soon, Pendlebury has backed the claim from the Victorian Transport Association (VTA) that companies will revert back to standard load limits from July 1.

The VTA last week revealed the findings of a survey it conducted with its members on IAP, claiming the results were a reality check for the program.

According to the survey, only 88 of the 585 trucks pre-enrolled in IAP in NSW would be enrolled by July 1 due to uncertainty over HML access.

The survey involved 22 operators who have a combined fleet of more than 3,000 trucks.

VTA Chief Executive Phil Lovel says the lack of support for the program should act as a wake up call for the Rees Government.

“Lets have clear and transparent information about what’s possible and what’s not, and clear updates on new approved routes,” Lovel says.

“It is the lack of clear route access that is leading to a lukewarm take-up of IAP enrolment.”

The VTA has also cited installation fees and ongoing charges as a disincentive, but service providers have defended the charges on the basis of productivity benefits.

Referring to areas such as the Green Triangle that runs through Victorian and South Australia, Pendlebury says companies have the ability to double their payload.

Unlike Victoria which has applied IAP to concrete pump trucks and cranes, Queensland will join NSW in mandating IAP for HML access.

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