INDUSTRY body Road Freight NSW has called on major shipping lines to provide truck operators with a moratorium on detention charges for the drop-off and pick-up of containers at empty container parks around Sydney over Easter.

RFNSW chief executive Simon O’Hara said the request to extend detention-free days was warranted as the majority of ECPs would be open for just three days during the Easter-Anzac Day holiday period.

“This means that over the 11-day period from 19 April to 28 April, transport operators will only have three days to return their empties, given that most ECP’s will be shut due to public holidays and weekends,” Mr O’Hara said.

“It’s extremely unfair and yet another cost impost on our members who continue to raise concerns about the current operational issues and other inefficiencies they experience at ECP’s. As RNSW has previously highlighted, transport operators are facing constant redirections and lack of empty slots and then being hit with charges for turning up early or late, even though they been queued outside.”

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Mr O’Hara said they had written to all major shipping lines asking for the extension of detention charges.

“We believe it’s time landside operators were given some relief from the ongoing series of charges levelled at them by the stevedores, ECP’s and shipping lines,” he said.

Mr O’Hara said RFNSW had sought the support of other industry stakeholders in order to take a united approach.

Shipping Australia chief executive Rod Nairn said they did not get involved in the commercial aspects of members’ business. “Each shipping line makes their own decisions in relation to their freight rates and charges,” Mr Nairn said. “They do this in a highly competitive environment.”

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