Vehicles with conditional automation, where an automated driving system drives the vehicle for a sustained period of time but the human driver is ultimately required to maintain proper control of the vehicle, are not yet ready to be approved for use on Australian roads.
Australia’s climate change policies should include a focus on boosting truck productivity as a cost effective opportunity to reduce emissions from heavy vehicles. This should include increasing width and length requirements, a whole of government approach to reducing barriers to increased use of high productivity freight vehicles, and for improving road access.
Increased heavy vehicle productivity can optimise the energy and fuel use of the entire freight system by reducing the number of trips required to move the freight task.
The ATA has called for independent, no-blame, safety investigations for road crashes involving heavy or autonomous vehicles in its submission to the House of Representatives standing committee inquiry into the social issues relating to land-based driverless vehicles in Australia.
Competitive neutrality should be applied to the National Heavy Vehicle Accreditation Scheme (NHVAS), the ATA has recommended in its submission to the Australian Government’s competitive neutrality review.
In its submission to Australian Industry Standards (AIS) the ATA has called for safety and driver training to be the key focus for the proposed four year schedule of work for the TLI Transport and Logistics Training Package.
The submission was in response to the Transport and Logistics IRC Skills Forecast Key Findings Discussion Paper 2017.
The ATA supports proposed changes by the Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA) that would allow the continued use of 40 channel truck radios.
In 2011 limitations to the continued use of this equipment was introduced to reduce congestion, which has since been achieved.
In its submission to the Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman (ASBFEO) inquiry into payment times and practices, the ATA has called for a mandatory code to prohibit extended payment times being forced on small businesses The trucking industry consists almost entirely of small businesses and is characterised by tight margins. The vast majority of the costs incurred by small trucking businesses must be met before they can bill their customers. This includes wages or personal living costs, fuel, tyres, finance costs, registration and maintenance.
The ATA has recommended a strong road safety focus should be included in the Australian Government’s 2017-18 Federal Budget.
The Victorian Government should reject the imposition of fixed payment rates under the Owner Drivers and Forestry Contractors Act 2005 (Vic), the ATA submission to the review of the Act says.
Productivity reforms to road freight and greater use of High Productivity Vehicles (HPVs) are critical reforms for a more prosperous economy, as outlined in the ATA submission to the Productivity Review.
Road freight is critical to the economy and productivity reforms in the sector can deliver significant gains to the wider economy. Increasing the use of HPVs can move more freight on less trucks, delivering productivity gains in the road freight sector.