Report puts livestock supply chain safety in focus

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Tuesday, 17 March, 2020 - 16:15
Policy & legislation
National News

The National Heavy Vehicle Regulator (NHVR) is calling for feedback on future safety reforms across the livestock supply chain.

The review targets several key areas where Chain of Responsibility laws applied to the movement of sheep and cattle, said NHVR CEO Sal Petroccitto.

“We’ve identified a range of issues including loading practices, understanding of mass management and general understanding of regulatory responsibilities,” Petroccitto said.

“There are a number of questions raised about why overloading occurs, the pressures on drivers and how the livestock supply chain are meeting their safety responsibilities.”

According to the Livestock Supply Chain Issues Paper, movement of sheep and cattle makes up about four percent of the national freight task, but accounts for more than 10 percent of accidents, including a significant number of rollovers.

The average livestock journey from the farm gate to the processor is estimated to be over 500km, involving stops and transfers between feedlots, saleyards, vehicles and spelling.

Petroccitto said the need for further guidance around livestock loading practices followed a review last year by the NHVR into Improvement Notices issued to Forbes and Dubbo saleyards.

“It’s important we look at what we can do to make these journeys as safe as possible for drivers, livestock and other road users,” he said.

“We are seeking responses to a series of questions about opportunities to improve mass management awareness and practices, and identify tools that will help members of the livestock supply chain in meeting their safety and regulatory responsibilities.”

Submissions to the Livestock Supply Chain Review close on 24 April 2020.