Base rates for our Vic tippers
Govt announces set hourly rates in name of safety
A MINIMUM hourly rate has now been set for tipper drivers working on government infrastructure projects in Victoria.
The move is a new commitment from the State Government, as part of its Code of Practice for the tipper industry.
The pledge, announced at the Transport Workers Union Branch Delegates Conference, has gained the support of both the union and the Victorian Transport Association.
Premier Daniel Andrews said it was time all workers on State Government jobs “shared in the benefits of that investment in a fair and equitable way”.
“You have made us understand how important this issue is... without this union we just would not be making these important reforms,” Mr Andrews told the union delegates.
Vic/Tas TWU secretary John Berger described the plan as a “de-facto” safety measure, saying an overhaul of the wage structure was a huge win for severely underpaid drivers.
“Tipper drivers currently work without certainty regarding income, conditions and hours and are vulnerable to exploitation,” Mr Berger said.
“They struggle to make truck repayments, maintain the vehicle, feed the family and put the kids through school and, out of desperation, make the heart-breaking decision to break road rules to get the next load.
“It is a brutal existence for many and the situation is at flashpoint as more and more of these drivers are operating dangerously each day in densely populated suburban areas, anecdotally, breaking fatigue laws, speeding, running red lights and, sometimes, rolling when cornering, while packed with over 20 tonnes of construction site debris.
“A system of hourly rates will automatically correct or counter most, if not all, of these issues.”
VTA chief executive officer Peter Anderson said the plans were in time for the expected rise in tippers working on construction projects such as, Western Distributor, Metro Tunnel and the North-East Link.
“There is no doubt there is going to be a huge increase in activity of earthworks and the movement of soil through the suburbs, that is only going to grow,” he said.
“For the sake of the industry, this is a minimum standard and minimum wage for drivers moving soil around Melbourne to ensure the industry isn’t compromised in any way.”
Despite the term “safe rates” being used in union media on the matter Mr Anderson said this was not Road Safety Remuneration Tribunal by proxy.
“Absolutely not, we need to stop looking over our shoulder in fear there is someone standing behind us,” he said.
“It isn’t the good operators we are worried about, it is the unscrupulous ones that may emerge based on the opportunity to grab work as quickly as they can.
“The VTA has been petitioning the government to ensure there is minimum standards not just in wages but conditions.
“We all need to lead.”
system of hourly rates will automatically correct or counter most, if not all, of these issues.
WELCOME CHANGE: Tipper drivers working on Victorian Government Projects will have a set hourly rate.