Bobbins South Coast Transport and Member for Eden-Monaro Peter Hendy have welcomed the abolition of the Road Safety Remuneration Tribunal.
Dr Hendy met with Bobbins in Pambula last week, to hear first hand how the RSRT was crippling the trucking industry.
Russell Fitzpatrick of Bobbins said the Road Safety Remuneration Tribunal had nothing to do with driver safety.
“Bobbin’s will stand behind anything making the industry more safe but this was not the case with the RSRT,” Mr Fitzpatrick said.
“The tribunal discriminated against owner drivers, but there is no link to owner drivers having more accidents than fleet drivers.”
While the RSRT didn’t directly affect Bobbins, Mr Fitzpatrick said it affected nine of their subcontractors.
“The award was flawed, it didn’t address the cost of fuel which is a truck drivers highest expense. So petrol could have risen to $3 a litre and the pay would have been the same.”
The tribunal was created by the previous Labor government in 2012 and is responsible for pay and safety in the trucking industry.
The Coalition government and truck owner-drivers argued that a recent pay order establishing a national minimum pay rate and unpaid leave for truck drivers, threatened the livelihood of small operators by pricing them out of the market and enforcing much higher rates of pay.
“Tens of thousands of owner truck drivers, many of whom have taken out mortgages to buy their trucks, faced being driven out of business by the RSRT,” Dr Hendy said.
“We rely on small business operators such as the owner-drivers across Australia who are the lifeblood of our transportation industry and the backbone of our economy. We stood with these enterprising small business owners and we have acted swiftly,” he said.
The money saved by abolishing the RSRT will be redirected to the National Heavy Vehicle Regulator, to implement practical safety measures.
Sign up for our newsletter to stay up to date.