Increased demand for transport and logistics

WorkSafe is issuing a reminder about safety in the transport industry due to increased demand on transport carriers during the COVID-19 pandemic. This relates to the drivers of heavy vehicles, smaller trucks and delivery vans.
Safety alert published

Monday 30 Mar 2020

Industries and topics
  • Transport, logistics and warehousing
  • Infectious diseases

Background

The COVID-19 pandemic has seen an increased need for deliveries to shops, homes and distribution centres, and the temporary lifting of heavy vehicle curfews in Victoria.

Safety issues

This increased demand may lead to:

  • longer shifts and travel at unusual times
  • more loading and unloading
  • reduced availability for vehicle maintenance
  • increased traffic at distribution and shopping centres
  • risk of exposure to coronavirus

Recommended ways to control risks

Employers and self-employed persons should ensure:

  • fatigue risks are controlled and drivers are fit for work. For more information about managing fatigue risks, see the Fatigue prevention in the workplace: your health and safety guide
  • effective infection control policies, procedures and practices are in place and are followed
  • vehicle maintenance schedules are in place and followed
  • hazardous manual handling risks are eliminated or reduced
  • traffic management systems are in place are followed
  • people, vehicles, and mobile plant are separated

Legal duties

Under the Occupational Health and Safety Act 2004, employers must, so far as is reasonably practicable, provide and maintain a working environment that is safe and without risks to the health of employees and independent contractors. This includes identifying and controlling risks to health or safety in relation to the use of vehicles, manual handling and infectious diseases.

Employers must, so far as is reasonably practicable, provide or maintain plant or systems of work that are safe and without risks to health.

Employers must provide employees with the necessary information, instruction, training or supervision to enable them to do their work in a way that is safe and without risks to health.

Employers and self-employed persons must also ensure, so far as is reasonably practicable, that people other than employees are not exposed to risks to their health or safety arising from the their conduct.