Australian authorities propose telematics to make vehicle logbooks redundant

Australian authorities propose telematics to make vehicle logbooks redundant

NTC general manager of Safety & Environment, Tim Eaton, said the proposal would make compliance with fatigue laws easier for drivers and transport operators.

"Operators who already use suitable in-vehicle telematics to manage driver fatigue will no longer need to keep written records," he said. "By reducing the burden of form-filling, drivers and support staff can get on with the job of running a safe and professional business."

Truck and bus drivers currently fill out a paperwork diary every time they start work or stop for a break.

Many heavy vehicles are already equipped with in-vehicle telematics systems to track deliveries and monitor compliance with speed and fatigue laws.

"Telematics suppliers want more guidance on issues such as how a driver is identified, counting time and roadside enforcement," said Eaton. "Courts also need advice on how to mandate telematics for the minority of persistent speed and fatigue law-breakers under Chain of Responsibility laws."

He said the NTC is looking for feedback on all these issues to identify the best way forward.

The scope of the position paper is limited to providing a voluntary and equivalent alternative to paper-based records. Broader national policy issues, such as overcoming the limitations of paper records and options for alternative compliance will be addressed through NTC's telematics and compliance strategies.

The Australian Transport Council asked NTC to develop a performance based specification for heavy vehicle speed and fatigue systems. The position paper was developed in consultation with industry, unions, suppliers and governments. Focus groups are also planned, which will include drivers and roadside enforcement officers.

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