Heavy vehicle rest area win

The ATA has welcomed the budget commitment to spend $80 million on heavy vehicle rest areas and urged the government to start work as soon as possible

The Australian Trucking Association (ATA) has welcomed a commitment to deliver heavy vehicle rest areas across Australia.

The federal government’s first budget has committed an additional $80 million for heavy vehicle rest areas over the next four years.

The ATA says rest areas have been chronically underfunded for years. Last week’s budget announcement is an important down payment on fixing the issue.

The budget will lift spending on the heavy vehicle safety and productivity program (HVSPP) from approximately $70 million annually to $100 million annually by 2024-25.

However, less than 10 per cent of past HVSPP project funding has gone to rest areas in recent years. The ATA says the government must focus on project delivery and ensuring the additional $80 million is actually spent on rest areas, located where industry needs them.  

The ATA has campaigned for minimum rest area standards – which governments would then need to ensure are delivered. 

The ATA says these standards should include the distance between rest areas, their design and a requirement that new rest areas on the national highway network be able to accommodate 53.5 metre combinations. 

It has also called for at least $100 million annually to be spent on rest areas – with more to be spent on fixing roads.

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