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PLAYTIME IS OVER: ISUZU CALLS OUT SAFETY & COMPLIANCE

The recent seismic shake-up of our daily lives has forced many businesses to turn urgent attention toward core business outcomes such as efficiency, return on investment and safety.

Doing ‘more with less’ has become a staple mantra in recent times, but as Isuzu Australia Limited’s National Sales Manager, Les Spaltman, contends, Aussie businesses would also do well not to neglect safety and compliance as central to their operations moving ahead.

“The challenges of recent years have certainly highlighted the value of getting more milage out of every asset purchase. We’ve seen many businesses stripping back operations to their upmost efficiency, while also seizing the opportunities available,” Mr Spaltman said.

“More specifically, what our own research—the Future of Trucking Report—has made clear is that 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.”

Ready (and raring) to work

Another discovery made in Isuzu’s Future of Trucking (FoT) Report was the notion that no less than 65 per cent of business owners felt it more important (and more efficient) for new trucks to be pre-built and ready to drive away, compared to custom-built trucks.

This is where Isuzu’s pioneering Ready-to-Work (RTW) range comes to the fore.

Accommodating almost every trade application imaginable, Isuzu’s RTW line-up covers all bases, resulting in a range of trucks and trade-specific bodies optimised in every aspect to suit the needs of the ambitious tradesperson.

With many models able to be driven on a car drivers’ licence (up to 4,500 kg Gross Vehicle Mass), and featuring clever, two-pedal transmissions, they are just as easy to drive as the daily commuter—with the added bonus of being safer for the business and far more productive.

Chain of Responsibility

On the topic of safety, businesses large and small can expect to hear much more about Chain of Responsibility (CoR) measures going forward.

The road transport industry is placing greater focus on CoR and the National Heavy Vehicle Regulator (NHVR) are doubling down on efforts to prosecute breaches of the legislation governing this, as Mr Spaltman explained.

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

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

“Large fleets are performing ahead of their smaller counterparts when it comes to implementing policies—possibly a reflection of the more complex operations and regulatory compliance that comes with a larger fleet operation.

“However, either way, these figures are a concern,” he said.

Overlooked and overloaded

A huge area of focus for CoR law is mass loading and this is often where smaller fleets draw the unwanted attention of regulatory bodies.

Due to gaps in CoR awareness and education, smaller operations can be more prone to overlooking mass limitations and guidelines, overloading vehicles such as utes that are simply not fit for purpose.

“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.

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

Next level

Isuzu’s current marketing campaign titled, ‘Playtime is Over’, makes the light-hearted suggestion that those ready to take their business to that next level should be in the market for the efficiencies and practicalities of a light-duty truck.

Summing things up, Mr Spaltman added, “If you want to stay on the right side of regulations, if you want to reduce trips, achieve better milage and have the peace of mind that you have bought the right tool for the trade you’re in, then it’s definitely time to update the ute and get yourself into an Isuzu Ready-to-Work truck.”

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