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NSW will ‘keep talking’ on fatigue

NSW Government confirms talks on fatigue, but Minister plays down further changes

The New South Wales Government will meet with trucking industry representatives over concerns with the new fatigue regime, but the Minister is playing down hopes of further changes to the regulations.

Roads Minister Michael Daley confirms to ATN he will meet with the industry, but only to consult on changes already announced.

“I have already agreed to grant a number of exemptions to the new regulations to give me the chance to consult further with the industry. This roundtable discussion is part of that,” he says.

“The aim of the meeting is for key stakeholders to provide me with further advice on the best way forward with these fatigue laws.”

Representatives from the trucking industry, primary producers, sole operators and the Roads and Traffic Authority (RTA) will be invited to the meeting.

Last week the Coalition moved a disallowance motion on the Road Transport (General) Amendment (Heavy Vehicle Driver Fatigue and Speeding Compliance) Regulation.

Shadow Road Safety Minister Andrew Fraser says the disallowance motion has had “a successful result”.

“We have been in discussions with Mr Daley, who has agreed to meet with key industry groups to take the regulations back to the table and fix the problems,” he says.

“The regulations as they currently stand are unworkable for industry and the State Labor Government has given no indication as to what will happen at the end of the Government’s 12-month exemption.”

Shadow Roads Minister Duncan Gay says industry was not properly consulted in the drafting of the laws.

“The fact there was very little consultation on top of their being released only a week before they commenced meant industry had almost no time to familiarise themselves with the changes,” he says.

“It is no wonder there has been such confusion.”

Gay says a number of issues need to be addressed, including the lack of rest stops, confusion around the regulations and the demerit points associated with new work diaries.

“We would like to thank the truck drivers and people in the media that have supported us in pushing to get these regulations changed,” he says.

“We look forward to working with the Government and industry to make sure these regulations are effective in managing driver fatigue and safety and workable for all industry.”

Daley says he is “willing to continue talking”.

“In the end they are about making our roads safe,” he says.

“People invited to the roundtable include representatives from the trucking industry, primary producers, sole operators and the RTA,” he said.

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