SMARTER WORKING DRIVES HORNBY TRANSPORT IN THE RIGHT DIRECTION
Heavy vehicle operators and drivers are exposed to high-risk conditions – whether they’re driving a large tanker from a job site in Newcastle to steel mills in Port Kembla, or at the wheel of a service vehicle travelling more than 250 kilometres through New South Wales’ (NSW) congested road network. The larger the mass or weight of a vehicle, the greater potential disruption it causes.
The Work Health and Safety Act makes it clear that everybody in the chain of responsibility needs to proactively manage driver safety. You need an understanding of the potentially hazardous factors your drivers may encounter on their journey, and you need to know when they’re due for a break. Setting safety policies is only half the battle – the real difficulty lies in knowing drivers comply with regulations.
You also need to ensure vehicles are roadworthy. This was a key priority for Hornby Transport, a family-run business servicing blue-chip companies in Australia’s heavy industrial and agricultural markets. From humble beginnings as a one-man business in the early 1970s, the business has grown to more than 60 employees operating Australia-wide bulk haulage transfers.
Hornby Transport’s mixed fleet of 60 prime movers, body tippers, trailers, excavators, utes and service vehicles covers hundreds of thousands of kilometres in any given year. With drivers often covering vast areas throughout NSW, from the North Coast to the Southern Highlands, the organisation needed a way to proactively monitor driver adherence to company policies and road laws.
Strong focus on compliance
“While our drivers are skilled and responsible, the excessive amount of time spent behind the wheel creates risk. We need to certify driver compliance with fatigue management policies, and vehicle safety is equally as important,” Adam Hornby, Managing Director, Hornby Transport, says. “Rather than waiting for issues to arise before scheduling a service, our drivers must be able to raise a concern before it becomes a major problem.”
Hornby Transport has been working successfully with Teletrac Navman since deploying its GPS fleet management technology in the early 2000s. Following a successful Electronic Work Diary (EWD) trial, it became the second organisation in NSW to install fatigue management technology. It has also deployed Mass Manager and Pre-Trip Checklist in 45 vehicles. Mass Manager enables the business to run its vehicles under the Intelligent Access Program (IAP) managed by the National Heavy Vehicle Accreditation Scheme (NHVAS). IAP declarations and mass recordings are available in real-time, ensuring vehicles are loaded to the maximum legal weight. Mass Manager also eliminates paperwork from vehicles, providing Hornby Transport with more flexible, cost-efficient ways to access customers.
With a strong focus on safety and innovation, Hornby Transport is now in the best position to comply with Australia’s complex fatigue laws. EWDs provide real-time data, enabling back-office staff to monitor driver performance and respond immediately to rest-break breaches. More broadly, Hornby uses live data on each driver’s fatigue status to adjust the fleet roster instead of waiting for paperwork to come in with each truck.
Business benefits beyond compliance
Accurate data has improved business decisions and, as a result, customer service. Workshop staff have real-time insight into vehicle location and incoming customer requests. They can redirect the closest vehicle to the job, making the most efficient use of time and fuel. This also decreases maintenance bills by reducing unnecessary wear and tear across the fleet.
Teletrac Navman’s reporting technology combined with Pre-Trip Checklist allows Hornby Transport to coordinate maintenance services around workload. Before starting a journey, drivers go through a pre-defined list of vehicle safety checks in order to ensure compliance with NHVAS rules. This gives back-office staff instant visibility into the condition of vehicles, allowing them to take preventative measures without disrupting customer service.
“On top of ensuring vehicles are correctly maintained and loaded, and that drivers aren’t driving too long, we’re able to run our fleet more efficiently. This goes hand in hand with productivity, as we’re able to react quickly to changing customer requirements, and put our drivers and vehicles on the safest, most efficient route.”
The bulk of Hornby Transport’s work involves picking up scrap metal from various locations around NSW, primarily for largest customers Bluescope Steel and Onesteel. If a particular yard has a breakdown, back-office staff can divert vehicles to another location to tip or pickup waste with no waiting time. Hornby Transport’s customers aren’t invoiced for unnecessary delays, delivering financial benefits for both parties.
The cost savings don’t stop there. Based on driver management records and the fleet’s maintenance records, Hornby Transport’s insurance provider reduced premiums by five per cent. This is a result of the added security provided by vehicle tracking technology.