THE National Heavy Vehicle Regulator (NHVR) is urging everyone involved in this year’s grain harvest to have a heavy vehicle safety management check-up ahead of what is expected to be a bumper season.
Road Safety and Freight Transport Assistant Minister Scott Buchholz said the NHVR had released a simple 9 Step SMS Roadmap to assist businesses to develop and improve their heavy vehicle safety systems.
“The prospect of good yields in many grain growing regions of Australia means more heavy vehicle traffic on country roads and that means safety becomes paramount,” Mr Buchholz said.
“Whether you own your own truck or you’re in the process of arranging a contractor, take some time to make sure you’ve thought about the risks and put steps in place to make your operation safe.
“Now is the time to make sure your truck is properly checked before use or have safe access for a contractor onto your property, know your mass limits and have the proper permits in place.”
NHVR chief executive officer Sal Petroccitto said the 9 Step SMS Roadmap focused on targeted content to mitigate key safety risks.
“It can be tailored for companies that are just starting out, improving on existing systems or seeking continuous improvement,” she said.
“An SMS can be as simple as undertaking a daily visual inspection of your heavy vehicle, not putting pressure on drivers to exceed the speed limits or drive fatigued and loading within your mass limits.
“The Roadmap provides simple templates, quick guides and toolbox talks that can be tailored to suit business needs regardless of the size of your operation.
“We want to ensure companies have the tools to put in place safety procedures and to engage in important safety conversations with staff and other parties in the chain.
“It’s all set out in an easy-to-read format and we’ll be working with groups right across the industry to help implement systems and support their safety needs.”
Everyone has role to play
GrainGrowers general manager of policy and advocacy, Zachary Whale, said primary producers had legal obligations under the Chain of Responsibility if they owned or operated a heavy vehicle, or if they contracted transport services to another operator.
“Everyone who has influence over a transport activity has a role to play,” he said.
“Whether you pack, load, consign, move, receive, or unload goods transported on Australia’s roads, these laws apply to you.”
Mr Whale said with the supply chain and logistics industry accounting for 26 per cent of national worker fatalities, reducing the risks related to transport safety was critical.
“To comply with the law, you will need to know the risks of your transport activities and have business practices in place to control them,” he said.
Source: NHVR, GrainGrowers
For more information on heavy vehicle safety ahead of the 2021 grain harvest click on www.nhvr.gov.au/primaryproducers
For more information on the NHVR’s 9 Step SMS Roadmap click on www.nhvr.gov.au/sms