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New Contract Rules Threaten Truckies

Filed under Breaking News, Business, Latest News, Rural

A new RSRT order that will begin in a few weeks and could force many truck owner-operators and contactors out of business

Federal Member for Wide Bay Warren Truss

March 14, 2016

A Road Safety Remuneration Tribunal (RSRT) order which threatens the viability of many truck owner-operators and contractors should be delayed, Member for Wide Bay Warren Truss said on Monday.

Mr Truss confirmed he has been contacted by many truck owners concerned about the implications of the order for their businesses.

“The order made by the RSRT has taken truck owners by surprise. It was made just a week before Christmas and takes effect in less than four weeks,” Mr Truss said.

“The order fixes rates for freight contracts which are generally above current rates and will price many truck owners out of business. The major logistics companies and freight forwarders will be unable to use individual contractors because their rates will be uncompetitive.

“Many owner-operators are heavily indebted and fear losing their trucks and homes.”

The RSRT was set up by the former Labor federal government at the request of the Transport Workers Union.

“It is more about union power than safety,” Mr Truss said.

“Indeed, if financial viability is a factor in safety outcomes, the recent RSRT rulings are likely to worsen safety outcomes as more and more truck drivers are faced with the financial pressure of lost contracts.

“Most truck owners are simply unaware that they may be about to be impacted by an RSRT ruling that they didn’t know about and had no part in.

“They are not members of the union and don’t wish to be.

“Most do not know what the rulings mean, and whether they affect them or not.”

Mr Truss welcomed the action of the Australian Industry Group, who have applied to the RSRT to delay the implementation of the order until January 1, 2017 and to phase in the new rates.

Mr Truss said delaying the operative date of the order would give the industry necessary time to understand what is proposed, and allow more time for the Fair Work Ombudsman to consider the implications of the order and help contract drivers to comply with the new requirements or consider their future.

Mr Truss urged truck operators to contact their industry association to seek advice on what they need to do to comply with the RSRT orders.


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4 Responses to New Contract Rules Threaten Truckies

  1. Disgruntled.

    Kind of very very scarey for the independent contractors!Refer to the following.

    http://www.bigrigs.com.au/news/rsrt-new-order-explained/2903974/

    There is also facebook, get from Big Rigs. Find it yourself as I am not smart enough to post a link.

    Seems it is a follow on from a Gillard/union agreement of some time ago.

    Info also on http://www.fullyloaded.com.au and also http://www.ownerdriver.com.au

  2. Jack Black

    In late 2013, the Road Safety Remuneration Tribunal made the first road safety remuneration order. The order comes into effect on May 1, 2014. The order sets out minimum entitlements and requirements for certain road transport drivers, their employers or hirers, as well as participants in the supply chain.

    The order has requirements regarding payment time within 30 days of a received invoice for contractor drivers, written contracts for road transport drivers, which may be in an electronic format; contracts between supply chain participants; safe driving plans for drivers undertaking long distance operations in a motor vehicle with a gross vehicle mass (GVM) of more than 4.5 tonnes; training in work health and safety; drug and alcohol policies; dispute resolution and adverse conduct protection.

    http://www.rsrt.gov.au/default/assets/File/Updates/RSRT_Update_Autumn_2014.pdf

  3. Danny Palmer

    I am an owner driver who would like to be informed on the impact this on my business. I own one truck and this could be the end of my business. I need more information on how to remain a sole owner driver

    • News Desk

      Danny – as you are aware the Tribunal as refused to delay the implementation of the new rules. We suggest you contact your local Federal MP, industry association or the Transport Workers Union.