ATA says driving hours review not necessary

The Australian Trucking Association (ATA) said with heavy vehicle fatigue crashes continuing to fall, the National Transport Commission (NTC) should not proceed with a review of Standard Driving Hours until it can produce evidence of deficiencies in the current legislation according to its latest submission.

The submission is a response to the NTC’s concerns that drivers continually working the maximum legal hours over a repeating 28-day work cycle would become fatigued despite the Standard Driving Hours controls that manage rest.

ATA Policy Manager, David Coonan, said the concerns raised by the NTC regarding ‘nose to tail’ work patterns so far were all issues that had been discussed and addressed during the original development of the Standard Driving Hours legislation.

“A driver could still become fatigued under the Standard Driving Hours depending on what they do in their non-working time,” he said.
“However, additional hours of service legislation will not assist in this regard.

“The NTC needs to show evidence of real problems in the current regulations before they consider redeveloping the system.”

The ATA has also made recommendations to the NTC Australian Vehicle Standards Rules amendment package in a separate submission.

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