Prime Mover Magazine

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Geoff Crouch

The trucking industry needs to work as a unified front

June 2017

I am proud to be writing my first article as the new Chair of the Australian Trucking Association (ATA), and I am motivated to face the challenges that come with the role.

I wish to thank those that have worked so tirelessly before me, in particular the immediate-past Chair, Noelene Watson, for her efforts to improve and develop both the ATA and the trucking industry as a whole.

Noelene is a credit and an asset to the industry, and I appreciate her continued guidance and support.

We all know that there are many changes coming to the trucking industry in the near future that we will need to face and overcome.

These changes include the developing nature and scope of the freight task, compliance with Chain of Responsibility and emerging technologies, among other hurdles.

These challenges could seem insurmountable individually, but as a unified trucking industry we can achieve remarkable things.

My goal in my tenure as ATA Chair is to create and develop a more unified and cohesive front to approach these challenges, and challenges into the future.

Although for some issues not all industry stakeholders will agree on the same solution, I firmly believe that at times there will be issues that are of mutual benefit to every member of the Australian trucking industry that we can all work on together.

We need total industry unification on important issues, such as the mental and physical wellbeing of every member of the trucking industry.

This unification is key to ensuring that we can take the best possible care of our truck drivers.

Although there have been significant improvements in vital areas such as sleep apnoea, it is important for everyone in the trucking industry to recognise that this is an ongoing issue for those living with this condition.

This recognition and free flow of information is critical for further improvement.

There still exists a stigma for those who are struggling with their mental and physical health, and I would encourage everyone in the trucking industry to recognise this, as acknowledgement is the first step toward addressing it appropriately.

We need to make sure that we have practical processes and procedures in place to support members of the trucking industry when needed.

This unification and collaboration extends to how the ATA operates. The ATA exists to support its state and territory associations and their individual goals and challenges.

During my tenure as ATA Chair, I hope to increase and deepen our interaction and support of our state and territory member associations.

Since the ATA’s creation, we have been dedicated and focused on improving road safety, to ensure that everyone gets home safely to their families.

In that vein, we have increased our interaction and engagement with the public at large to discuss and teach road safety techniques and information.

I believe that this more thorough level of member interaction will ensure that we can maintain and improve the safety, viability and professionalism of the trucking industry as a whole.

Combined with an increased level of collaboration and communication with other sectors of the trucking industry, we can ensure that our industry continues to thrive well into the future.

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