With the increased cost in most aspects of the transport industry such as vehicle cost, fuel, wages and many other running costs; it’s now more important than ever that operators manage the operating cost and cost of freight moved either per tonne or per kilometre.
While accreditations under the National Heavy Vehicle Accreditation Scheme (NHVAS) such as basic mass management, maintenance management, and fatigue management (basic or advanced) have been around for a long time, many operators still operate without this accreditation, giving other operators an advantage.
Some companies continue to operate without accreditation for many reasons such as the belief that fines are larger for a breach while operating under accreditation (this is an old wives’ tale and not correct at all), or that the cost of obtaining accreditation is an observed amount or the management of accreditation is an impossible task for a single operator or small business.
A company like HV Compliance, or other compliance providers, can even do it for you.
The fact is it’s designed to improve safety and efficiency in the road transport industry by setting minimum standards for vehicles, drivers and operators.
NHVAS offers a range of benefits, including:
• More weight per truck;
• Long driving hours or working hours between breaks;
• No more Heavy Vehicle Inspection Scheme (HVIS) annual roadworthiness inspection.
Other ways companies can increase productivity include Performance Based Standards (PBS).
PBS vehicles are designed to meet the individual needs of operators and the types of goods being transported.
This means they are tailored to the specific operation, allowing for improved efficiency and productivity.
PBS vehicles offer a range of benefits to operators, including improved payload capacity, increased fuel efficiency and reduced wear and tear on the vehicle. They are also designed to provide a smoother ride, which can reduce fatigue among drivers.
PBS vehicles don’t just include the big A-doubles that we now see everywhere, PBS vehicles range from 3-axle trucks with 3-axle dog trailers, buses and road trains up to A-triples, with a weight increase of 6 tonnes to over 15 tonnes on identical combinations on the same roads.
PBS vehicles are designed to meet the latest safety standards, which helps to reduce the risk of accidents.
The use of PBS vehicles can also result in lower maintenance costs and generally result in a reduced amount of wear and tear on components which can lead to fewer repairs and lower maintenance costs.
Some other ways for operators to reduce cost include farm gates grain transport mass exemption notice, common registration expiry dates and the grain harvest management scheme.
Some of these allow for road trains to operate on roads where access is not normally given, increased insurance bargaining powers and a general overall weight increase.
So, while the good old days of trucking are great to look back on, operators need to make sure that at the same time they are not being left behind.
- Morgan O’Rance is transport compliance advisor from HV Compliance