Look­ing at an EWD fu­ture

Aus­tralia to be­gin use of EWDs as US driv­ers baulk

Big Rigs - - NEWS -

AS THE Na­tional Heavy Ve­hi­cle Regulator fi­nalises its con­sul­ta­tion pe­riod on the fu­ture of vol­un­tary elec­tronic work diaries in Aus­tralia, Amer­i­can driv­ers are work­ing to fight against the man­date of their use.

De­spite the sup­port of the the United States’ largest trade trans­port or­gan­i­sa­tion, the Amer­i­can Truck­ing As­so­ci­a­tions, the man­date of elec­tronic log­ging de­vices has come un­der fire.

The Owner-Op­er­a­tor In­de­pen­dent Driv­ers As­so­ci­a­tion has been the loud­est critic of the leg­is­la­tion which be­came ef­fec­tive across North Amer­ica last year – the end re­sult of a decade long push for the man­date.

The OOIDA filed a re­quest ask­ing for the small truck­ing car­ri­ers who could prove con­sis­tent safety standards to be granted an ex­emp­tion.

In­stead the car­ri­ers hoped they could re­turn to the pa­per log model for a pe­riod of at least five years, to pro­vide nec­es­sary time to vet the de­vices.

The re­quest has re­ceived more than 28,000 com­ments

to date fol­low­ing a call to ac­tion in Jan­uary.

Mean­while in Aus­tralia feed­back from in­dus­try and driv­ers alike has re­mained mea­sured, call­ing for com­mon sense and func­tion­al­ity.

In a state­ment to the press fol­low­ing the re­cent spate of crashes on NSW roads ATA CEO Ben Maguire sug­gested the ul­ti­mate goal of the changes must be flex­i­bil­ity for the driver.

“In­dus­try rep­re­sen­ta­tives put the view that vol­un­tary elec­tronic work diaries must en­able greater flex­i­bil­ity and in­di­vid­u­ally tai­lored fa­tigue man­age­ment for driv­ers, who at the mo­ment can’t rest when they are tired be­cause of the pre­scrip­tive fa­tigue rules,” Mr Maguire said.

“Safety reg­u­la­tion is vital, but it has to make a dif­fer­ence and has to be rea­son­ably prac­ti­ca­ble. Oth­er­wise, it just means that op­er­a­tors spend all their time and money tick­ing boxes and can’t fo­cus on the big safety pic­ture.”

Driver and road safety ad­vo­cate Rod Han­nifey raised sim­i­lar points about the use of EWDs in his sub­mis­sion to the NHVR on the mat­ter.

Mr Han­nifey has asked for fur­ther con­sid­er­a­tion of a tol­er­ance when it comes to de­ter­min­ing the work or rest time recorded.

“I have pre­vi­ously asked for a 30-minute tol­er­ance, even if only twice a week for those days when ev­ery­thing goes bad and all of those things are be­yond my con­trol,” Mr Han­nifey’s sub­mis­sion read.

“My view is that you must meet us some­where in the mid­dle or noone will want an EWD.”

At this time no EWDs have been ap­proved by the NHVR for use, how­ever the NHVR ex­pects to start as­sess­ment and ap­provals of EWDs in early 2018.

If you cur­rently have an elec­tronic record­ing sys­tem or are look­ing to buy one, make sure you talk to the tech­nol­ogy provider be­fore mak­ing a de­ci­sion.


ELEC­TRONIC WORK DIARIES: Driv­ers and in­dus­try say they want flex­i­bil­ity when it comes to the use of elec­tronic work diaries.

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