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Prime Mover Magazine


Funding boost of $3.9M for heavy vehicle safety projects

An edu-tech app to help educate learner drivers about sharing roads safely with trucks, Australia’s first roadside effluent disposal facility for livestock carriers and a video series promoting 10 top safety tips are among the 14 initiatives to receive funding from the latest round of the National Heavy Vehicle Regulator’s (NHVR) Heavy Vehicle Safety Initiative.

In announcing the $3.9 million funding program, Deputy Prime Minister and Infrastructure and Transport Minister, Michael McCormack, said it will continue to support industry-led heavy vehicle safety projects throughout Australia.

McCormack said learner drivers using the DriveAbout app will soon receive comprehensive advice on sharing the road with trucks safely.

He said previous research has shown most road fatalities involving heavy vehicles are the fault of the other party – not the truck driver.

“As a country MP I know the challenges many young and new drivers can face with sharing the road with trucks,” said McCormack.

“Sadly, young drivers are significantly overrepresented in fatal crashes involving heavy vehicles.

“However, programs such as these are there to gear new drivers with the information and advice they need to improve and enhance safety outcomes.

“Teaching learner drivers how to safely share the road with trucks will have real impacts on ensuring our young people stay safe on the roads, especially in the regions,” he said.

The DriveAbout app is currently available in English and eight Indigenous languages.

The NHVR received 38 proposals for a share of about $3.9 million of funding for the 2018-19 round of the Heavy Vehicle Safety Initiatives program.

McCormack said he was pleased the Liberals and Nationals’ Government was able to support a wide range of projects from livestock saleyards, waste carriers, ports, farmers, right through to improved awareness for motorists.

“These new initiatives and programs will continue to support our efforts to make Australian roads safer,” he said.

Road authorities are currently looking at a range of sites in Queensland’s Lockyer Valley to trial Australia’s first roadside effluent disposal facility for livestock carriers.

Federal Member for Wright, Scott Buchholz, said the innovation would benefit both livestock carriers and the local community.

“Management of livestock effluent on public roadways is an important step forward to protect road safety, animal welfare, biosecurity, amenity, environment and business interests,” said Buchholz.

“This $400,000 investment will be a real boost for the Lockyer Valley, with the organic material providing a new source of compost to support local farmers and producers,” he said.

Australian Livestock and Rural Transport Association National President (ALRTA), Kevin Keenan, also welcomed the funding being provided for the pilot livestock effluent disposal facility.

“Having a pilot facility located on Queensland’s Warrego Highway, west of Brisbane, will service more than 20,000 semi-trailer equivalent movements and remove up to 2.5 million litres of effluent from the road corridor annually,” he said.

NHVR CEO, Sal Petroccitto, said the safety projects played a crucial role in improving heavy vehicle safety and productivity.

“These new initiatives contribute collectively to better heavy vehicle industry safety, education, policy and practice in Australia,” said Petroccitto. “The NHVR is looking forward to working with the winning bids to ensure the projects deliver safety outcomes for all road users.”

Other safety initiatives to receive funding in 2018-19 include:

  • A truck safety resource in WA and the NT
  • The development of a brake calculator
  • A #GetTruckWise trial campaign in Bendigo
  • A series of workshops in WA and Alice Springs raising awareness about the Chain of Responsibility among transport customers
  • Expansion of the National Safety Camera Network

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