Aussie Trucking: Why Chain of Responsibility Isn’t Quite Working

Posted by Hubfleet

Australia’s trucking industry is no walk in the park. Every year, we see way too many accidents and road deaths. Between 2015 and 2019 alone, there were a shocking 2,420 truck crashes reported in a study by the National Heavy Vehicle Regulator (NHVR).

So, to tackle these issues and make businesses (and their drivers) accountable, the Chain of Responsibility (CoR) laws were rolled out in 2014. The goal? Make sure it’s not just the truck drivers taking the fall for safety blunders. But, despite great intentions, the CoR has become a bit of a headache.

The CoR is a great idea, But…

It’s confusing!

A big challenge with the CoR is that it’s difficult to understand and very convoluted. Many people in the supply chain don’t understand their CoR duties because they’re all wrapped up in legal jargon. You’d be hard-pressed to find even an experienced worker who could list all their CoR responsibilities.

This means more reacting than acting when it comes to safety — companies often start making big safety changes after an accident has already happened. That leaves room for preventable accidents and messes up the supply chain’s efficiency.

Due diligence becomes a low priority.

Business owners are busy — that’s not new information. Sometimes, this means they don’t fully grasp how crucial due diligence is for CoR compliance, or just hand off the responsibility to others. They figure that signing contracts means they’re off the hook, ignoring the need for constant monitoring and risk checks.

How to get CoR right.

1. keep an eye on the supply chain.

Don’t rely only on contracts and paperwork for CoR. Actively check out your supply chain, spot potential risks, and fix them. That means regular audits, watching how drivers behave, and making sure everyone knows their part.

2. Make safety part of your DNA.

Safety isn’t just about rules on paper. It should be in your company’s genes. Encourage everyone, from management to the everyday driver, to take safety seriously. Train your crew and create a culture where staff feel confident to speak up about safety concerns.

3. Pick safety-focused transport partners.

When you’re choosing a transport provider, don’t just chase the lowest price. Look for the ones who put safety front and centre. Check their track record, see if they’ve got solid safety measures, and if they’re keeping their drivers happy and safe. You should also ensure they keep their trucks in good condition and that their drivers receive quality training.

Hubfleet can help you meet your CoR obligation at no cost!

In an industry where safety isn’t a luxury but a necessity, there’s no room for taking chances.

Hubfleet simplifies the implementation of a safety management system by facilitating open communication and data sharing with your transport provider. Safety is a job shared by all, but luckily for CoR partners, we don’t charge. Our service is completely free for you! Learn more here.