In the long running and laughable shambles that has been the RSRT over the past week, he ATA has come out in strong support for the Prime Minister’s announcement that a re-elected Coalition Government will abolish the Road Safety Remuneration Tribunal.
Malcolm Turnbull made the joint announcement on Monday with Minister for Employment Senator Michaelia Cash and Minister for Infrastructure and Transport Darren Chester.
The ATA chief executive Chris Melham said enough was enough.
“The ATA has been urging the Government to repeal the Act and abolish the Tribunal as a matter of urgency and the industry now feels like it has been heard.
“We commend the Prime Minister on confirming that legislation will be introduced in the next sitting to suspend the current order,” Mr Melham said. “However, the ATA will support any move that can abolish the Tribunal in this sitting.”
Mr Melham has urged all political parties to support the Government’s Bill to delay the implementation of the Order.
“The Australian Trucking Industry already has the most comprehensive road safety ‘watchdog’ in the National Heavy Vehicle Regulator (NHVR). It already polices trucking companies to ensure safe driving practices”, Melham said.
“The pain isn’t going to stop for tens of thousands of owner-drivers until the Senate passes legislation to repeal the Road Safety Remuneration Act and abolish the Tribunal.”
Mr Melham also welcomed the Prime Minister’s announcement to bolster the funding of the NHVR by redirecting monies from the RSRT to the NHVR.
“The ATA strongly supports measures that have genuine impacts on safety, because even one accident is one too many.
“The Heavy Vehicle National Law is seeing a consistent and constructive approach to improving real safety outcomes through fatigue, speeding and loading requirements.
“The ATA has successfully lobbied for major changes to the Chain of Responsibility (CoR) laws that cover businesses in the road freight transport supply chain.
“As we said in our letter to the Prime Minister last week, safety is the trucking industry’s first priority, but the road safety remuneration system has not and will not improve safety outcomes at all.
The only effective solution to dealing with the remaining small recalcitrant minority of the industry who choose not to comply with the law is to ensure effective enforcement of the CoR laws including by closing the remaining gap in the law with the anticipated CoR laws on Roadworthiness.”