We'll hound dodgy supply chain operators: Gay

NSW roads minister says consignors and loaders will be hounded if their practices force trucking operators to break the law

By Brad Gardner | April 2, 2012

The NSW Government will shift its focus to hounding the supply chain if it detects consignors and loaders are encouraging heavy vehicle offences.

Roads Minister Duncan Gay has warned recent actions against Lennons Transport Services, Scott’s of Mt Gambier, Fred’s Interstate Transport and Damorange may only be the beginning of what has so far been a severe crackdown on road transport.

Gay told the state’s parliament all parties involved in the supply chain must take reasonable steps to ensure trucks are not speeding.

"I am disappointed at this small number of rogues that have broken the law and have sought to compete unfairly through illegal practices. I am also aware of claims that drivers are forced to speed by loaders, consigners and other parties in the supply chain," Gay says.

"We are hitting the trucks now and if we find there are outside influences in the chain of responsibility causing these illegal practices we will pursue them with the same vigour."

Chain of responsibility laws hold all parties accountable for managing speed, fatigue and vehicle mass.

NSW Police last week announced authorities inspected 92 trucks belonging to Fred’s Interstate Transport and Damorange as part of Operation Discovery.
It says 22 speed limiter compliance notices were issued in total, along with 39 defect notices and 19 penalty notices.

Operation Discovery followed blitzes against Lennons Transport Services and Scott’s. While authorities allege they uncovered multiple breaches, including tampering with speed limiters, both companies plan to contest many of the allegations.

Scott’s CEO Peter Anderson says there is only one truck suspected of speed-limiter tampering and that the majority of the accusations against his company are inaccurate.

Lennons Managing Director Tony Lennon says the majority of the company’s fleet is speed compliant, there were no unrealistic demands placed on the firm by customers, and drivers did not abandon their rigs before police could apprehend them.

"The company has cooperated fully with regulators throughout the investigative process and will continue to do so," he says.

"However in the course of these investigations, a number of public statements by the authorities involving serious allegations, which have been reported in the media and are extremely damaging to Lennons’ reputation, are untrue or inaccurate."

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