MEDIA RELEASE: PIRSA
DATE: Monday 3 November, 2014
Finding solutions for agriculture transport issues
Improving access for heavy vehicles and agricultural machinery is the focus of a new project to create greater efficiencies and reduce transport costs for primary producers.
Primary Industries and Regions SA (PIRSA) and the Department of Planning, Transport and Infrastructure (DPTI) are partnering with Primary Producers SA (PPSA) to prioritise solutions to problems and inefficiencies being experienced by primary producers.
From today, farmers, transport operators and the community will be able to provide feedback on heavy vehicle and machinery transport-related regulations through an online survey.
Agriculture, Food and Fisheries Minister Leon Bignell said transport costs were a major issue for South Australia’s primary producers.
“Primary industries are a vital part of the State’s economy, and to remain globally competitive our producers must be able to seize opportunities to increase productivity and decrease the costs involved,” he said.
“Road transport is critical in linking the different parts of the supply chain. If we can remove some of the current constraints we should be able to see benefits across the industry.”
Transport and Infrastructure Minister Stephen Mullighan said current road transport regulations would be examined against the issues identified to see where efficiencies could be created.
“The survey results will give us a clearer picture of how regulations can be improved and where minor capital and infrastructure works can be done now to reduce time and cost factors without compromising community safety,” he said.
“Heavy vehicles and machinery have evolved over time, and these changes need to be weighed against current road transport regulations to ensure we have the right balance to maximise the State’s production and export potential.
“In particular we are looking to identify where approved routes for larger vehicles can be extended, and to investigate the issue of accessing a facility which is located just off an approved route.
“We will also consider the movement of machinery on public roads, which is of particular concern to farmers who own multiple properties and need to transport oversize machinery between those properties.”
Primary Producers SA Chairperson Rob Kerin said it was important to ensure transport, freight and heavy machinery regulations matched the needs of the agriculture industry.
“Primary producers have voiced their concerns that the system for regulating heavy vehicle transport doesn’t match with recent developments in agriculture,” he said.
“This survey provides an avenue for people to tell us what their issues are, where they can see opportunities for change, what routes they would like to see extended, and what agricultural machinery issues they face.
“Their comments will help inform our recommendations which will aim to reduce red tape, provide industry with clarity on government policies and regulations, and ultimately underpin further industry investment and development.”
The survey is available at www.ppsa.org.au/roadtransportsurvey and is open for public comment until Friday, November 21.
Email queries on both the online survey and transport project can be sent to PIRSA firstname.lastname@example.org