In the media

ATA pinpoints productivity and safety in PC reform submission The Australian Trucking Association (ATA) says previous reforms have hindered industry efficiency. In particular, it takes aim at national truck laws and regulatory reforms, saying they have failed to boost trucking industry sector-wide productivity and there must be reform (12 July 2019). More...

NHVR completes first fatigue-monitoring trial report The National Heavy Vehicle Regulator (NHVR) has completed its preliminary fatigue-monitoring evaluation, with a view that the technology has the potential to boost heavy vehicle safety - but not in isolation (11 July 2019). More...

Vehicle standards and safety under NTC microscope Vehicle standards and safety is the focus of the National Transport Commission’s (NTC) latest Heavy Vehicle National Law (HVNL) issues paper. It is the final issue in the first group of papers for ‘what is regulated’ under the HVNL (11 July 2019). More...

NHVR debriefs on fatigue detection paper Fatigue monitoring technology has the potential to boost heavy vehicle safety, according to a National Heavy Vehicle Regulator report (10 July 2019). More...

NHVR confidential hotline marks first anniversary The NHVR’s Reporting Line has taken almost 1,500 calls in its first year of operation, the regulator reveals. NHVR national intelligence coordinator Aarron Unger says that the hotline has proved invaluable for heavy vehicle drivers and supply chain coordinators (10 July 2019). More...

Truck restrictions offset by newer vehicle incentive The Smart Freight Partnership – Inner West, whilst introducing new curfews for certain trucks, encourages the uptake of cleaner vehicles to deliver safer conditions for drivers and residents as a way of counteracting those restrictions. Access times to roads within the zone will be cut for older trucks that don’t meet strict emission control standards - compared to current access hours (09 July 2019). More...

Environment Freight Zone to impose curfews on trucks in Melbourne Tough new curfews aimed at trucks by the Labor Government in Melbourne are one of the consequences of an Environment Freight Zone announced this week in the city's inner-west (09 July 2019). More...

Investigation into Bulga mine truck collision complete The NSW Resources Regulator says that the investigation is complete, and is calling on all mine operators and contractors to ensure they have strategies in place to eliminate or minimise risks associated with fatigue. They have recommended operators implement real-time fatigue monitoring systems, encourage workers to self-report fatigue and medical conditions, and review roster cycles (08 July 2019). More...

Heavy vehicle fire prevention conference in August timely High profile incidents regarding truck fires this year has prompted an investigation by the National Heavy Vehicle Regulator amid interest from wider industry to curb the growing amount of incidents (08 July 2019). More...

Northern supply chain and freight efficiency study underway Two top end universities are linking on a study to improve the efficiency of northern Australia’s agricultural supply chains and freight networks (05 July 2019). More...

HVIA welcomes moves to delay RVS Act The federal government’s intention to introduce legislation delaying the implementation date for the new Road Vehicle Standards Act (RVSA) has been welcomed. The Department of Infrastructure, Transport, Cities and Regional Development had been working towards an implementation date of December 10 (03 July 2019). More...

NTC seeks feedback on the safe operation of automated vehicles while on road The National Transport Commission (NTC) has released a Consultation Regulation Impact Statement seeking feedback on the role and regulation of different parties in the safe operation of automated vehicles on Australian roads (01 July 2019). More...

New Office to Accelerate Federal Road Safety Leadership The Federal Liberal and Nationals Government’s new Office of Road Safety is now operational and will get to work on improving leadership and co-ordination across governments to reduce deaths and serious injuries on the nation’s roads (01 July 2019). More...

Published – articles, papers, reports

Review of Fatigue/Distraction Detection Technology interim report 2019 NHVR: 04 July 2019 Phase 1 of the Fatigue Monitoring Trial involved an initial review of fatigue and distraction technology. The review found that monitoring technology performed best as part of an integrated fatigue risk management system, rather than as a standalone tool; and this is the focus of the next phase of the fatigue monitoring trial. The summary of the interim report is available here.

In practice and courts

AMSA: Consultation—draft Marine Order 31 (SOLAS and vessel safety certification) 2019 Consultation on marine order 31 is open until 4 August 2019. Marine order 31 provides the requirements for survey, certification and maintenance of certification of vessels. The order gives effect to chapters I and VIII of SOLAS and applies to regulated Australian vessels, government vessels and foreign vessels (Updated 08 July 2019). More...

NHVR: Draft Crane Industry Code of Practice feedback The draft Crane Industry Code of Practice has been developed by the Crane Industry Council of Australia in consultation with industry, and will consider and assess risks and control measures specific to crane operations. These include: crane road worthiness, mass configuration, crane load security, crane operator competency for road travel, crane operator fatigue. More...

Heavy Vehicle National Law Review: update The purpose of the Heavy Vehicle National Law Review is to deliver - from a first principles perspective - a modern, outcome-focussed law regulating the use of heavy vehicles. More...

Australian Industry Standards Cross Sector Supply Chain Skills – Development – Submission date 29 July 2019 TLI Chain of Responsibility – Development - Submission date 01 July 2019

NTC Consultation RIS: Developing technology-neutral road rules for driver distraction Comments are due 21 August 2019 - The purpose of this project is to find a better way to regulate the safe use of technology devices as part of the Australian Road Rules. More...

NTC Issues Paper - Easy access to suitable routes Comments due 16 August 2019. More...

NTC: National Heavy Vehicle Law Review Issues Paper 2 The National Transport Commission has begun its review of the National Heavy Vehicle Law. The commission is inviting stakeholders to provide their views on the law until February 2020. The second issues paper has now been published, focusing on fatigue management. Feedback is due by 16 August 2019. More...

AFIF: Biosecurity Levy Update - Revised Start Date 1 September 2019 The Government has announced a delay with a new start date of 1 September 2019 and a consequent small loss of revenue associated with a later start date. More...

CASA: Modernising Australia’s fatigue rules CASA is implementing response to the independent review of the fatigue rules and are now consulting with industry on the proposed CAO 48.1 Instrument 2019 - Modernising Australia’s Fatigue Rules. There will be a staged transition to the new rules: High capacity regular public transport operators (having a maximum seating capacity exceeding 38 seats or a maximum payload exceeding 4200kg (see subsection 2 of CAO 82.0) are required to transition to the new fatigue rules by 30 September 2019.

Reminder: Anti -Slavery Act The first reporting year for companies with the Australian financial year is 1 July 2019 - 30 June 2020 so businesses should be aware of these obligations this year. More...

Cases

Murrumbidgee Irrigation Ltd v M & H Acar Pty Ltd [2019] NSWSC 8071. The plaintiff have leave pursuant to r 12.1 of the UCPR to discontinue these proceedings. EQUITY – Costs application – order departing from r 42.19 of the Uniform Civil Procedure Rules 2005 (NSW) – whether defendant’s conduct has been so unreasonable as to warrant such an order. Use of heavy vehicles on site.

R v Palmer; Ex parte Attorney-General (Qld) [2019] QCA 133Appeal dismissed. CRIMINAL LAW – APPEAL AND NEW TRIAL – APPEAL AGAINST SENTENCE – GROUNDS FOR INTERFERENCE – SENTENCE MANIFESTLY EXCESSIVE OR INADEQUATE – where the respondent pleaded guilty to one count of dangerous operation of a vehicle causing grievous bodily harm – where the respondent was sentenced to two years imprisonment to be suspended forthwith for an operational period of three years – where the respondent was driving a prime mover and crashed into a line of cars that had stopped on a highway due to roadworks – where there were two signs signifying that there were roadworks ahead and that vehicles were to slow down – where the respondent claimed that he “zoned out” and failed to see the signs – where the respondent had .02 milligrams per kilogram of amphetamine and .2 milligrams per kilogram of methylampethamine at the time of the crash – where toxicology experts for both parties agreed that the effect of these drugs upon a particular user could not be deduced from the blood concentration – where the learned sentencing judge found that the respondent was not adversely affected by the drugs – where the learned sentencing judge found that the respondent’s inattention was due to familiarity with the road as a professional truck driver – where the learned sentencing judge identified the respondent’s remorse, early guilty plea and unremarkable traffic history as factors in mitigation – whether the learned sentencing judge erred in exercise of discretion when weighing up the factors in mitigation against the weight of the respondent’s drug use – whether the sentence without a period of actual imprisonment was manifestly inadequate. CRIMINAL LAW – APPEAL AND NEW TRIAL – APPEAL AGAINST SENTENCE – GROUNDS FOR INTERFERENCE – where the respondent pleaded guilty to one count of dangerous operation of a vehicle causing grievous bodily harm – where the respondent was sentenced to two years imprisonment to be suspended forthwith for an operational period of three years – where the respondent was driving a prime mover and crashed into a line of cars that had stopped on a highway due to roadworks – where the respondent had .02 milligrams per kilogram of amphetamine and .2 milligrams per kilogram of methylampethamine at the time of the crash – where it had been eight months since the respondent was sentenced to the hearing of the appeal – where the respondent had been in rehabilitation for his drug use –where the Attorney-General appealed against sentence and submitted that the respondent should be resentenced to serve a period of actual imprisonment – where the exercise of sentencing discretion miscarried and the sentence was manifestly inadequate – whether it would be contrary to the public interest and oppressive to the respondent to interfere with his rehabilitation by resentencing to a term of imprisonment – whether the Attorney-General negated any reason why the residual discretion not to interfere should be exercised Judges comment: In our respectful opinion, the observation that there is a community need to keep on Queensland roads drivers of heavy vehicles who behave like the respondent behaved was an error. Indeed, the need to keep such drivers off the roads explains the legislative requirement to disqualify offenders from holding a driver’s licence.

Legislation

NSW

Regulations and other miscellaneous instruments Road Transport Legislation Amendment (Fees, Penalty Levels and Charges) Regulation 2019 (2019-244).

Victoria

Acts No 7 Transport Legislation Amendment (Better Roads Victoria and Other Amendments) Act 2019 Date of commencement: 8 July 2019; Part 5 Division 2 (section 44), sections 45, 47 of this Act came into operation on 08 July 2019 (SG282 2.7.2019).