Sep 5, 2012

Safer highways for Australia’s truck drivers

The safety of the trucking industry is being revved up with $40 million funding to be delivered to the States and Territories to improve the roads our truck drivers use.

Every day on every road, the trucking industry and the people who work in it deliver the basic necessities that we rely on as part of life.

For these people, the nation’s roads are their workplace and the Federal Labor Government has more than doubled the roads budget to improve and upgrade Australia’s major highways.

As well as extra spending on highways, we are building even more places where truck drivers can pull over to take a break, catch up on sleep and check or re-configure their vehicles.

This work will continue under Federal Labor and today I am inviting applications for funding under Round Three of the Heavy Vehicle Safety and Productivity Program over 2012‑13 and 2013-14.

Round Three builds on the 236 projects successfully delivered under Rounds One and Two of the Program, which includes 95 new or upgraded rest areas and 45 new or upgraded parking/decoupling bays.

On the back of these successes, I have expanded the categories for funding under Round Three to include:

  • Rest areas;
  • Parking/decoupling bays;
  • Road network enhancements;
  • Technology trials;
  • Demonstration projects; and
  • Livestock Transport Industry projects.

Submissions for Round Three of the Heavy Vehicle Safety and Productivity Program from industry will remain open until 30 September 2012 and from States and Territories until 31 October 2012, with successful projects to be announced and commence in early 2013.

All up, the Federal Labor Government is providing an extra $140 million for the Heavy Vehicle Safety and Productivity Program.

Beyond this program, the trucking industry stands to benefit from other major reforms including:

  • Replacement of the existing array of costly and confusing state-based regulations with a national regulator and one-set of nation-wide laws; and
  • Creation of the Road Safety Remuneration Tribunal with the powers to set pay and conditions to make sure drivers get a fair go (began on 1 July 2012).

For more information: