06/04/2018 - 14:04

Haulage hits red tape roadblock

06/04/2018 - 14:04

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A new regulatory system for heavy haulage movements on the east coast is costing the Western Australian economy millions, according to local trucking players, who are warning that the introduction of a similar model here would cause major problems.

Haulage hits red tape roadblock
RED LIGHT: The time taken to secure permits has blown out for some heavy haulage players.

A new regulatory system for heavy haulage movements on the east coast is costing the Western Australian economy millions, according to local trucking players, who are warning that the introduction of a similar model here would cause major problems.

Some states have voluntarily signed up to the National Heavy Vehicle Regulator, which controls oversized load movements.

But bureaucratic delays by the NHVR processing movement applications have come at a big cost, according to those who use the system.

For Doolan's Heavy Haulage chief executive Warwick Doolan, permit approval times have blown out from a week to two to three months.

His business, which is based in Victoria and has depots in Maddington and Port Hedland, was contracted to move four railway maintenance machines from Sydney to the Pilbara for use by an iron ore major.

That process was held up by the regulator and then by South Australian police, which under that state’s law are needed to escort oversized vehicles across the state.

“It’s just about brought us to our knees,” Mr Doolan told Business News.

“We’ve got trucks and equipment tied up, sitting there waiting on permits from these people.

“They’re not telling people the reasons for delays … they think it’s going quite well.”

An industry member told Business News that one customer had lost an estimated $100,000 per day while equipment was unable to move.

Mr Doolan warned against WA signing up for the regulator, the case for which he said had been presented to the state’s industry leaders recently.

“They’re pushing very hard to get WA on board, but there’s so much restriction (caused by it),” he said.

Western Roads Federation chief executive Cam Dumesny said he had been lobbying for a Senate inquiry, which he believed was likely to have multi-party support.

In one case, a piece of mining equipment that had been used in WA had to be barged from the Northern Territory to Queensland because it took more than 100 days to receive a movement permit, he said.

A big part of the problem was that local governments had increased road access authority, making it increasingly difficult to transport cargoes long distances, Mr Dumesny said.

The NHVR had not responded to a request for comment at the time of writing.

STANDING BY BUSINESS. TRUSTED BY BUSINESS.

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