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Fatigue management law in the Northern Territory will not be introduced until the national heavy vehicle regulator starts in 2013.

The Department of Lands and Planning was due to introduce the law last financial year but decided to hold fire until all jurisdictions move to national regulations.

A spokesperson for the department says trucking operators will need to meet their fatigue management obligations currently outlined in the Transport Fatigue Management Code until 2013.

“The Government had originally intended to introduce the model fatigue laws during 2009-10,” a spokesperson for the department says.

“The announcement of the creation of a national heavy vehicle regulator and legislation overtook this and the laws will now be introduced with the new regulator in 2013.”

The code was slotted into the Workplace Health and Safety Act and allows operators to determine how they want to manage fatigue.

Other states such as Queensland, Victoria and NSW require drivers without fatigue management accreditation to restrict their work to 12-hour days.

Those accredited in the basic fatigue management (BFM) module can work up to 14 hours, while advanced fatigue management (AFM) grants 16-hour work days in Queensland and NSW and 15 hours in Victoria.

Drivers are also required to take rest breaks after a set amount of work time.

The Northern Territory’s code of practice outlines guiding principles on how operators can manage fatigue, such as mandating rest periods, monitoring driver fitness and keeping records.

The spokesperson says the Territory supports the national regulator, which will be based in Queensland with offices nationwide.

Queensland’s parliament will be responsible for introducing laws and other jurisdictions will then need to pass the same legislation to ensure cross-border uniformity.

The Productivity Commission estimates regulatory reform will help increase GDP by $2.4 billion and productivity by 5 percent.

Courtesy: Supply Chain Review

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