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What you need to know about the 2016 RSRO

Scott Murray - Friday, January 29, 2016

The 2016 RSRO...What is it?

Last year, on December 18, the Road Safety Remuneration Tribunal issued the Road Safety Remuneration Order (or RSRO) to address the issue of minimum payments for contractor drivers.

Due to take effect from Monday, April 4 2016, this is the first time there will be set national minimum payments for certain contractor drivers in the road transport industry. More specifically, in the distribution of goods for sale or hire or long distance operations in the private road transport industry.

Did all those formalities just go straight over your head? No worries.

So, in a nutshell - drivers will be entitled to a fixed rate per hour and per kilometre, which will increase by 2% each year until 2020.

However, these rates vary depending on vehicle requirements. You can view the full 2016 RSRO, including the rate guide, on the Road Safety Remuneration Tribunal's website.

The Order says that contractors must be paid within 30 days, including for time they are personally driving, queuing, waiting and loading/unloading. Contractors are also to be paid for time they are assisting or supervising someone who is doing so.

Contractors are also to be paid for required rest times, and for cleaning, inspecting, servicing or repairing a vehicle or a trailer, as well as while inspecting a load, refuelling, recording information or completing required documents and waiting in a location because of a natural disaster.

However, payment times do not include breakdowns or accidents if the Contractor supplies the vehicle.

What this means for transport companies and their clients

The RSRO was designed to provide contractors with a safe and sustainable rate to prevent them from cutting corners – such as foregoing maintenance and working longer hours – to make ends meet.

The Order is legally binding on all parties involved in road supply chains, across all industries. This will impact the big retailers and industry giants, as well as smaller businesses.

For transport companies who employ drivers, like Transforce, this Order won’t affect our standard rates. However, in order to meet operational demand, transport companies sometimes sub-contract work to owner-drivers. This Order may increase the costs of engaging sub-contractors, which some companies might need to pass on to their clients.

Our thoughts...

At Transforce, we are at the forefront of the road transport industry. Our commitment, professionalism and innovation have helped us earn an enviable reputation in the industry for on-time and in-full freight delivery – nothing less than what our clients and their logistics managers expect.

The safety of our drivers is always at the forefront of our business and is never compromised for the sake of commercial gain. While this Order may feel like one more cost to be passed up the chain, it’s important to remember the person who is behind the wheel transporting goods.

This Order might have major implications for the industry, which will need to be monitored and assessed as the year progresses.

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