Victoria has followed in the footsteps of its neighbours and extended work diary exemption for truck drivers.
Soon truck drivers in Victoria will be exempted from filling out a work diary when transporting livestock over short distances, a move that would dramatically cut red tape for drivers.
The work diary exemption for livestock transport drivers in the state will come into effect on 5th October 2015, similarly to what is currently in place in other jurisdictions. The latest decision means the exemption is now in place in all jurisdictions that recognise the NHVR.
The National Heavy Vehicle Regulator (NHVR) has recently brokered a deal with the state of Victoria to extend a work diary exemption in place in Queensland, South Australia, Tasmania, New South Wales and The Australian Capital Territory to apply to truck drivers on Victorian roads. So if a driver is transporting livestock to or from farms within a 160km radius of their base, they will be exempt from filling out the work diary.
According to the NHVR this will reduce paperwork, allowing drivers to rather concentrate on the task at hand. NHVR executive director of productivity and safety Geoff Casey had this to say about the exemption in an article on Fullyloaded.com.au
“This exemption will bring Victoria in line with practices in the ACT, NSW, Queensland, SA and Tasmania and allow drivers to focus on delivering primary produce more efficiently for the benefit of the entire community,”
That does not mean drivers don’t have to comply with fatigue management laws. Drivers must still comply with work and rest hour requirements. The exemption does reduce the paperwork burden on truck drivers. Mr Casey went on to explain:
“This exemption simply reduces the burden of physically carrying a written work diary while undertaking this specific task,”
Decision Welcomed by LRTAV
The Livestock and Rural Transporters Association of Victoria (LRTAV) have welcomed the exemption which it says will benefit local operators as well as others travelling short distances over the borders with NSW and SA.
LRTAV President John Beer said,
“The work diary exemption reduces the unnecessary red tape burden on low-risk rural carriers and allows them to focus on the job at hand,”
“Victoria is not an island. There is no reason why our rules should be different from adjoining states and I am very pleased that a common sense outcome has prevailed.”
The writer highlighted that Victoria was hesitant to adopt the exemption at first because of concerns that it would undermine fatigue management laws.
The Australian Livestock and Rural Transporters Association (ALRTA) said it has been working in conjunction with the NHVR and jurisdictions for the exemption to be introduced in Victoria.
ALRTA president Grant Robins said this outcome proved that the NHVR were able to deliver nationally consistent reforms on future issues. He explained,
“The NHVR has shown great leadership to broker a harmonised outcome without having to resort to a lowest common denominator approach,” ALRTA president Grant Robins says.
“This outcome bodes well for the capacity of the NHVR to deliver nationally consistent reforms on other issues in future.”
Read more at: http://www.fullyloaded.com.au