News & Issues
AFCA receives funding boost to deliver safety initiative
The Australian Forest Contractors Association has welcomed NHVR support for AFCA’s National Forestry Logistics Safety Program (NFLSP) to deliver safer roads as part of the next round of Heavy Vehicle Safety Initiative program.
The Heavy Vehicle Safety Initiative called for implementable, value-for-money initiatives that deliver significant heavy vehicle safety benefits.
Stacey Gardiner, AFCA’s General Manager said “the initiative was one of 12 programs approved for a share of the $3.9 million funding by the NHVR, supported by the Federal Government”.
The forest industry has been working collaboratively on forestry specific haulage challenges such as load restraint and managing truck rollover using static rollover threshold. The findings of this research inform how our industry complies with the Heavy Vehicle National Law.
Stacey Gardiner added “ The NFLSP will be delivered via a series of free regional forestry workshops across Australia specifically targeting Forestry Contracting Businesses and transport operators and loaders”.
The workshops provide an opportunity to hear about the testing and evaluation of recent research and consider how it can apply to individual businesses and industry more broadly. It is important for our industry to continue to be the safest we can be and these workshops will assist in achieving this.
AFCA is pleased to be partnered with Engistics, who have had led the evaluation of log load restraint methods and they will be assisting in developing the content and delivery of the workshops.
Federal Minister for Infrastructure and Transport Darren Chester said all 12 programs would provide road safety benefits.
“These projects will help change lives and save lives,” Mr Chester said.
“The Commonwealth Government is investing money in valuable road safety initiatives that have been called for by industry and are targeted to where they can make a real difference.”
NHVR CEO Sal Petroccitto welcomed the partnership with the Australian Forest Contractors Association.
“We don’t pretend to have all the answers, which is why we asked groups to harness their existing knowledge and deliver heavy vehicle safety outcomes,” Mr Petroccitto said.
“We sought proposals for programs that can be delivered nationally to enhance safety across the heavy vehicle industry and therefore the safety of all road users.”
For more information on funded programs visit www.nhvr.gov.au/hvsi
AFCA – Stacey Gardiner | 0419 328 093
NHVR – Andrew Berkman| 0429 128 637
Log Haulage Registered Code of Practice
AFCA is leading the development of an industry and national Log Haulage Registered Code of Practice (LHRCoP).
The National Heavy Vehicle Regulator (NHVR) has developed new framework which encourages industry to work with them to develop a voluntary registered Code of Practice (RCoP) that is appropriate for the industries circumstances. The NHVR released an introduction and guidelines in January 2017 to support those who wish undertake the development of a RCoP. To view the guidelines or see further information visit the NHVR website at https://www.nhvr.gov.au/safety-accreditation-compliance/industry-codes-of-practice
The forest industry has a responsibility to ensure the supply chain, particularly log haulage is conducted in a safe and efficient manner under the Heavy Vehicle National Law (HVNL). The project aims to identify how everyone can address their Chain of Responsibility obligations. Given the importance of safety to our industry and the risk associated with log transportation it is important for industry to consider and agree on national best practice approach for log haulage and provide guidance on the steps. The overall objective being to improve and support safety outcomes and drive best practice in log haulage.
It is expected that the Log Haulage RCoP will identify and assess the risks along the supply chain for log haulage and establish standards and procedures to mitigate risks with respect to the HVNL. The Log Haulage RCoP will specifically cover the haulage of logs and specifically consider risks relating to loading, log restraint, rollover prevention and unloading and safe driving practices.
What will the LHRCoP Do?
• Support industry to demonstrate compliance with the new legislation
• Create a system that can be third party and internally audited
• Improve safety of log haulage
• Address and manage forest industry specific risks
• Provide for an industry wide standard with consistent elements
• Opportunity to create “best practice standards”
• Clarify responsibilities along the supply chain
• Provide a legal defense if something goes wrong
What will it cover and how will it be delivered?
It will address aspects specifically relating to the haulage of logs including, loading, restraint, dispatch, transportation and unloading. This means that it will also consider all those within the supply chain that have a role to play including, landowners/forest managers, harvesters, hauliers, processors and port operators.
Broadly the project will include a literature review to capture the good work that has already been done in this space followed by a thorough Risk Assessment by an independent expert and it will involve representatives and consultation with participants from all of the supply chain.
A formal governance structure is proposed which allows all of industry to guide and provide input into the project - to view click below.
A project outline has been developed - to view click below.
How can I be involved?
AFCA has now filled the 2 positions available on the Project Steering Committee and is pleased to have James Asher from Queensland and Barry Fennell from the Green Triangle representing forestry contractors businesses. There are still 2 positions on the Project Working Group currently being filled. The Working Group will assist in the risk assessment work and help shape the Log Haulage RCoP development.
There will also be a range of other opportunities to become involved and provide feedback into the project in addition to the 4 positions available mentioned above. If you would like to register for project updates - please register your details at this link
How is it being funded?
The Australian Forest Products Association membership has agreed to provide funding for 50% of the project and the Forest and Wood Products Association will provide additional funding to support the project. The AFCA Board has agreed to provide $50,000 in kind support in order for the General Manager to project manage the project given the importance of this project to our members.
Where are we up to?
AFCA lodged a Notice of Intent with the NHVR in mid March 2017.
The NHVR has published the Notice of Intent which was submitted. The NOI will remain on their web site for comment from 19 April 2017 for 28 days and it can be viewed here. The purpose of this period is to provide industry and the wider transport industry an opportunity to understand the purpose of the proposal.
Following the notification period the NHVR will provide AFCA with advice on how to proceed.
Should the NHVR approve the project, it will then kick off in May/June 2017. There is also expected to be a meeting of the Steering Committee once all nominations are in to provide an update and for the committee to come up to speed.
The project is proposed to be developed and finalised over the coming 18 months. Importantly, there will be several opportunities throughout the project for industry to be involved and help shape the development of the Log Haulage RCoP.
For further information or to register your interest to become involved contact Stacey Gardiner, General Manager, AFCA on email@example.com, 0419 328 093.
AFCA & ForestWorks FOLS agreement: Member Discount
AFCA has become an advocate of the FOLS Skills Verification Program, signing an agreement with ForestWorks to provide AFCA members and their operators with discounted FOLS fees. Currently, all relevant AFCA Directors are moving towards all their operators being uploaded on FOLS. HVP and Forestry Corporation NSW have both committed to FOLS and are currently transitioning their Forestry Contracting Businesses onto FOLS.
To see the member discounts and why AFCA belelives it is important click on AFCA FOLS FAQ
To find out more about FOLS Skills Verification Program visit ForestWorks website.
Log Truck Drivers Deserve an Apology
The Australian Forest Contractors Association is urging Leader of the Tasmanian Greens, Ms O’Connor to apologise following her comments made Thursday 16 March 2017 suggesting that ‘log trucks kill people’.
Adan Taylor, AFCA Chairman said “These comments are unfounded and demonstrate a lack of understanding of our industry, our hard-working people who live and work regionally, and support the vibrancy of many important rural communities. It defies logic to think anyone would start their work day with the intention of being involved in a fatality.”
Mr Taylor added “The Forest Industry has engaged and worked with a range of stakeholders, including WorkSafe Tasmania, to deliver improvements on log truck safety. These activities are making a difference and have led to enhanced safety knowledge for log truck drivers and has driven technology advancements.”
Our industry is also supported by policy frameworks like the Forest Safety Code (Tasmania) 2007 (currently under review) along with skills development and training which provides a framework to support continuous safety improvement. In addition, AFCA has also been working closely with the National Heavy Vehicle Regulator to proactively address Heavy Vehicle National Law requirements.
Most recently industry has endorsed a holistic national approach on log truck safety and industry is currently in the early stages of developing a national Log Haulage Registered Code of Practice. This will provide a whole of industry approach to driving log haulage best practice in safety.
Like all rural based industries, the forestry industry has challenges, like large distances to markets and must rely on heavy vehicle transport, and our industry does not hide behind the fact all road users can make improvements to safety. AFCA and our industry has and continues to strive to achieve this through a range of training and policy developments.
Mr Taylor concluded “We want our hard-working drivers to come home every night to their families and have productive and uneventful days; we want this for all road users and we are playing our part in this. To suggest that ‘log trucks kill people’ is misleading and upsetting and it also fails to acknowledge the amount of work that has, and continues to be undertaken by our whole industry on continuous safety improvements.”
Media Contact: Stacey Gardiner, General Manager 0419 328 093 I firstname.lastname@example.org
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