Another spotlight on SA transport issues

TRUCK: Driver Gordon Wilson in front of a Smith Haulage truck bound for Adelaide from Tumby Bay.

TRUCK: Driver Gordon Wilson in front of a Smith Haulage truck bound for Adelaide from Tumby Bay.

Primary producers across South Australia are encouraged to take part in a survey to highlight road transport issues as part of the second stage of the 90-day Change@SA Transport Project.

The project is a collaboration between Primary Producers SA, Primary Industries and Regions SA and the Department of Planning, Transport and Infrastructure to improve issues with productivity and route access.

The first stage brought about 50 projects which included enabling road train and B double access to the Jamestown saleyards, the introduction of permits to allow movement of oversize agricultural machinery at night and the introduction of tri-axle dollies for road train combinations.

David Smith of Smith Haulage in Tumby Bay said he had been involved with the project since the beginning and thought it was great to see it move on to a second stage.

“The success of the project is that it’s driven from a really high level,” he said.

Mr Smith said the project had helped to bring about resolutions to many issues that had affected primary producers and the transport industry for years.

Now a new survey has been provided for primary producers to raise freight issues and is open to other sectors that may not have participated in the first stage, such as forestry, dairy and aquaculture.

The survey asks producers to identify issues constraining productivity or to contribute ideas on improving productivity through infrastructure or policy changes.

Primary Producers SA chairperson Rob Kerin said the project could deliver at least $100 million per year in savings to the agricultural industry.

“As a result of the first project, $56 million in productivity gains have been made and many access issues have been cleared up, such as using larger combinations to move grain from silo to port, enabling road train access to some saleyards and night movement of machinery less than four metres wide,” he said.

Mr Kerin said there were 700 responses from the first survey so this was a second chance for people who wanted to raise issues to be involved.

Mr Smith said the improvements made from this project would benefit more than local farmers as it helped to move more trade commodities such as grain, which in turn would bring more money for South Australia.

“Grain is an export commodity so producers will gain from more grain being able to be moved at a lower cost,” he said.

“We really need input from producers to have this productivity grow.”

The survey is open online until May 15 at www.pir.sa.gov.au/agtransport.

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