Fatigue management laws to be reformed


Fatigue laws are in for a shake-up, after claims the scheme has failed to attract trucking operators

Basic Fatigue Management (BFM) will be reformed, after NSW claimed the scheme has failed to attract trucking operators due to its inflexibility.

The National Transport Commission (NTC) has agreed to a request to look at work and rest periods under the BFM module, which limits drivers to 14-hour workdays and proscribed rest breaks.

Following meetings with industry groups and trucking operators, Roads Minister Michael Daley contacted the NTC’s Greg Martin requesting a review of the scheme, saying governments need to do more to encourage BFM uptake.

"Some trucking companies may have lost flexibility under the scheme, and this might encourage them to stick with the traditional approach of relying on a driver filling in a record of how much driving he has done," Daley says.

The NTC has been told it needs to look at striking a balance between safety and ensuring operators can comply with their obligations under fatigue management.

"What we need is the right level of flexibility to attract more truck operators into this management accreditation scheme," Daley says.

A consultation process will now be held with industry groups, unions and fatigue management experts, which may then lead to greater action at a ministerial level.

"I understand the NTC could then develop a regulatory impact statement which would be considered by all of Australia’s transport and roads ministers, at the Australian Transport Council (ATC)," Daley says.

You can also follow our updates by liking us on Facebook