Industry News

Isuzu warns against doing more with less

Supply chain issues compounded by COVID-19 can be mitigated by operators who might be running vehicles for longer through Ready-to-Work vehicles according to Isuzu Australia Limited.

The availability of its Ready-to-Work range has, for those with work commitments that won’t wait 12 months, can expedite the need for a new asset without compromising safety.

It follows research found in Isuzu’s Future of Trucking (FoT) Report that suggests 22 per cent of ute owners were prepared to make a bigger commitment to their businesses and upgrade to a truck that would better serve the demands of their application.

Due to supply chain disruptions, many manufacturers are using their current vehicles for longer as it is proving much harder to get new trucks.

By running their trucks for perhaps longer than they should, they can risk avoiding servicing and updating.

Isuzu National Sales Manager Les Spaltman said Australian businesses have been doing ‘more with less’ in recent years by neglecting safety and compliance.

“The challenges of recent years have certainly highlighted the value of getting more milage out of every asset purchase,” he said.

“We’ve seen many businesses stripping back operations to their upmost efficiency, while also seizing the opportunities available.”

The report also discovered that 65 per cent of business owners felt it was more important and efficient for new trucks to be pre-built and ready to drive away, compared to custom-built trucks.

As a result, Isuzu have released their ‘Playtime is Over’ campaign which promotes their Ready-to-Work (RTW) range of vehicles.

The line-up features a range of new trucks and trade-specific bodies that can be purchased and used straight away.

The road transport industry, has in recent years, placed greater focus on Chain of Responsibility (CoR) measures, and the National Heavy Vehicle Regulator (NHVR) is doubling down on efforts to prosecute legislation breaches.

Spaltman said smaller fleets are most vulnerable to these measures.

“This poses a significant issue for many businesses, and our study shows that smaller fleets are in a particularly vulnerable position,” he said.

“As our FoT report states, 35 per cent of small fleets are completely unprepared for, or unaware of their CoR requirements.”

A large focus area of CoR is mass loading, which is often where smaller fleets draw unwanted attention of regulatory bodies.

Spaltman said that expenses for complying with regulations should be non-negotiable as the punishments far outweigh the risk.

“Fines can run between $50,000 and $500,000, so the cost of complying with regulations should really be a non-negotiable expense for any transport dependent business,” he said.

“In fact, 16 per cent of businesses we surveyed described compliance with CoR as ‘an essential business expense’.”

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