ATA chair in global campaign for safety and small business
CHAIR of the Australian Trucking Association (ATA), Geoff Crouch, will campaign for safety and small trucking businesses at the International Labour Organisation's expert meeting in Geneva this week.
The meeting will bring together experts from around the world to collaborate in developing a code of practice and guidelines on best practices in road transport safety.
Selected to attend the meeting by the International Organisation of Employers, Mr Crouch will represent Australian and New Zealand truck and bus businesses to share insights with delegates about the importance of key industry issues including chain of responsibility and holding industry customers to account.
"All parties in the supply chain have a responsibility for road safety and an obligation to uphold best practice standards,” Mr Crouch said.
"There is simply no excuse for ignoring potential safety issues, whether you be a driver, business director or customer.”
Mr Crouch will emphasise the need for improved and more frequent heavy vehicle rest areas and the need to ensure small businesses are paid within 30 days, everywhere.
"Roads and rest areas are a truck driver's workplace. In Australia there is a desperate need for improved heavy vehicle rest areas. Trucking businesses and drivers need strong strategies in place that will ensure drivers have access to the facilities they deserve, like proper parking and access to water and shade,” Mr Crouch said.
"We also need to see the implementation of 30-day payment terms, a practical and effective measure that will assist owner-drivers.
"Small businesses make up 98 per cent of the Australian trucking industry. They are not banks. They cannot afford to extend finance to large customers,” he said.
Additionally, Mr Crouch will discuss the importance of strong driver medical standards.
"Drivers must adhere to a strong set of medical standards to ensure they are fit for duty and able to carry out all tasks required in the course of their duties,” he said.
Mr Crouch will warn international delegates against repeating the failure of Australia's Road Safety Remuneration Tribunal (RSRT), now abolished.
"Transport owners and operators in Australia have made it clear that the RSRT has devastating impacts, including financial hardship, increased debt, reduced equipment values, widespread uncertainty and significant stress on families, relationships and mental health,” Mr Crouch said.
"The international community needs to learn from Australia's now-corrected mistake,” he said.