The release of the PBS assessment discussion paper, by the National Transport Commission, has been well received, with the NHVR welcoming its release.
It is now almost ten years since the scheme began, and many feel it is time to start looking towards the future for the PBS, this is to ensure that all these vehicles continue making quite significant contributions towards managing the growth of the Australian freight industry.
The release of the PBS scheme discussion paper has highlighted some of the enormous productivity and safety benefits of PBS Vehicles.
There has been a lot of growth throughout the year when it comes to the uptake of high-performance vehicles, and it is hoped that when working alongside the NTC and the heavy vehicle industry as a whole that this growth will continue.
It is hoped that the good work of the NTC will continue to support the work of the NHVR that is already underway so that future PBS programmes can continue to be improved including many of the issues highlighted in the PBS scheme discussion paper.
Originally implemented in 2007 the PBS Scheme started by the NTC offered to the heavy vehicle industry better safety and higher productivity levels through innovation and its new fit for purpose vehicle design. Since 2013 the PBS scheme has been run by the NHVR.
The findings outlined in the Assessing the effectiveness of the PBS scheme documents, shows PBS vehicles:
- Has seen a huge reduction of 440 million kilometres in truck travel, this reduction has resulted in saving at least four lives during the 2014- 2016 period
- Trucks have been involved in 46% fewer major crashes
- There have been gains across all commodities of 24.8 percent
- The industry has saved over 94 million litres of fuel during the 2016 period which added up to a reduction in CO2 emissions by staggering 250,000 tonnes
- Also during the 2016 period, a 6.2% gross tonne per kilometre saving was delivered
- When it came to road maintenance expenses – approximately $65 million has been saved.
The NVHR will release further details of future PBS work programmes in the coming weeks.
The PBS Scheme discussion paper has also highlighted the complexity involved when it comes to the approval process and costs involved with access, one of the biggest barriers for PBS vehicles.