The Australian Trucking Association (ATA) has welcomed the NSW Government’s decision to create a new permit that will allow essential freight workers to travel across the New South Wales-Victoria border without self-isolating.
The new permit follows a push from the ATA and its members, calling on the NSW Government to review its border controls and clarify the self-isolation direction for truck drivers.
“The new permit will allow truck drivers to travel between NSW and Victoria to carry out their work duties without the requirement to self-isolate, providing their employer has a COVID-19 Safety Plan,” ATA CEO Ben Maguire said today.
“Drivers were being directed to self-isolate for 14 days upon entering NSW, which was impractical. In some cases, the direction was not consistent with the official health order.
“We thank the NSW Government and Transport for NSW for listening to industry and their swift action in rectifying the issue.
“Trucking plays an essential role in Australian communities, ensuring access to food and medicine. We appreciate the government’s understanding and support,” he said.
The NSW Government has started developing the new permit, which we understand will be available through Service NSW by close of business today, 9 July.
“This is the kind of leadership we need in these times, and we must ensure confidence and certainty is maintained. There is no room for ambiguity,” Mr Maguire said.
Mr Maguire said that in addition to the need for a COVID-19 Safety Plan, drivers are asked to take extra care.
“Truck drivers should ensure they practice physical distancing, minimise contact and maintain good hygiene practices to limit the spread of the coronavirus,” Mr Maguire said.
“If drivers show symptoms of COVID-19, they should not be required to come to work.
“The ATA is working with the NSW Government on the details of the new permit to make sure it works as smoothly as possible, as well as a series of other border control issues,” he said.
The ATA and its member associations collectively represent the businesses and people of the Australian trucking industry. Together, the ATA and its members are committed to safety, professionalism and viability.