News

Govt must rule out massive truck rego hike: Trucking Association

Beef Central, 12/04/2021
REGISTRATION charges for about half of Australia’s heavy vehicle fleet would increase significantly under a proposal developed by Austroads to lower emissions.
A research report developed by Austroads, the peak organisation of state and territory road transport agencies, includes a proposal for massive increases in registration charges for older trucks.
The proposal has triggered an angry response from the Australian Trucking Association, which says it will lead to increased charges for 400,000 heavy vehicles.
Of those, 147,000 heavy vehicles would be hit with “outrageous” registration increases of 220 per cent.

ATA CEO Andrew McKellar has called on Australian Governments to reject the proposal.

“The Austroads report says that those operating an older truck could be forced to pay up to $20,000 in registration charges per truck per year – that’s a brutal 220 per cent increase from the current registration fee of $6,225 for a prime mover and semi-trailer,” Mr McKellar said.

“Amidst the challenges of COVID-19 and the bushfires, the trucking industry has been on the frontline, working hard to get Australians back on their feet and communities supplied.

“In total, the proposal would affect more than half of Australia’s heavy vehicle fleet. ”

Austroads says its report analyses the impacts of an aging heavy vehicle fleet and explores measures that have been used to manage the same challenge internationally.

The report says trucks in Australia and New Zealand are older than in many other countries, due to low barriers to entry, exacerbated by having no secondary disposal market, and few restrictions on how and where they operate.

Richard Delplace, Austroads Transport Network Operations Program Manager, says the oldest heavy vehicles impact the community in several ways, including air pollution, noise, and health but, until now, this issue has been hard to define and manage.

“Defining aged heavy vehicles by their emissions standard provides the clearest definition and will likely result in the greatest positive impact of any targeted actions,” Richard said.

In this project, an aged heavy vehicle was defined as being above 4.5 tonnes GVM, used in freight transport and manufactured before 2008. Three sub-classes of categorisation are based on the vehicle’s compliance with exhaust emission standards in the Australian Design Rules.

Mark Gjerek, lead consultant on this research, says the nature and structure of the national fleet and freight sector means that the aged truck problem is difficult to overcome with equitable and effective measures.

“Across the world, governments have taken action to reduce the impacts of aged trucks in their jurisdictions. International best practice suggests that different kinds of measures should be combined to achieve the greatest effect,” Mark said.

“Our study presents examples of actions that could directly influence the aged truck fleet. These can be broadly classified into four types of action: road access restrictions, financial penalties, financial incentives, and retrofit/repower programs.”

“Freight and heavy vehicle regulation and planning are currently being reviewed on several fronts. This is the perfect time to consider this issue to ensure it is included in future planning for a safer, healthier and cheaper freight network,” Richard said.

However the Australian Trucking Association says the proposal will only push hardworking small and family trucking businesses out of business and into financial hardship because they simply could not afford to keep their trucks on the road.

Mr McKellar said there were better ways of encouraging trucking operators to upgrade to newer, safer trucks.

“Last year, the ATA strongly argued for measures to help trucking businesses buy new equipment, which ultimately resulted in the Instant Asset Write Off and temporary full expensing,” he said.

“As a result of these measures, trucking businesses are lining up to buy new trucks.

“Instead of punishing businesses, we need to see more action from government to remove barriers to new vehicles, such as amending the truck dimension and weight rules and providing a temporary zero emission truck purchase incentive,” he said.

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Comments

  1. Michael Powell, 26/04/2021

    I cant believe this could happen I have 2 tipper trucks pre 08 .At 57 years old I have just payed off the last truck I’m unable to get a loan to up date my trucks I’m just keeping my head above water as it is.

  2. Wayne Lewis, 21/04/2021

    As usual the big companies with all the money win out. The small operator with a fully compliant but older vehicle is hit again.
    Many small operators only survive because they now own their trucks.
    Buying a new one would make it impossible to continue to be viable.

  3. Trevor Ford, 18/04/2021

    This Will directly effect our business we’ve already seen a massive increase from the national heavy vehicle body and now a further 25percent increase will definitely affect the viability of my business.

  4. Anthony Bourne, 15/04/2021

    Disaster for many low use operators farming earthmoving ect, we have two older very well maintained trucks doing 50,000 ks annually they spend a lot of time in the shed ! also my friend runs a 1980 kenworth and bogey float shifting he’s own machine probably does 2000 ks a year these jobs can’t support a new truck and become unviable the old truck doing low ks is much cleaner than the new one doing big ks with ten times the tyres fuel ect let alone the inputs of building the heap of shit

  5. veronica winterton, 15/04/2021

    This extra registration and restrictions will end up costing the consumer money. I doubt whether it will alter the carbon footprint one iota considering that China and India are building numerous new coal fired power stations. As usual this hasn’t been thought through. Take the push for Electric cars…. how is the electricity to be generated when wind and solar are so unreliable? We need some practical answers from Politicians for a change instead of wishful thinking and “feelings

  6. George+Willows, 12/04/2021

    Truck operators know when it is time to pension off a truck, they are in a highly competitive business.
    Halve a trucks life and you double the resources and carbon footprint to do the same job.
    Already older trucks are targeted by the highway patrol (revenue raisers) and even insignificant issues are dealt with harshly so safety is not an issue.

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