RAISING awareness of good practice in safely packing shipping containers is the aim of a new campaign announced this week by industry and the federal government.

Deputy Prime Minister and infrastructure minister Michael McCormack welcomed the Safe Container Loading Practices & Heavy Vehicle Safety Campaign, which has been awarded $140,000 under the Australian Government’s Heavy Vehicle Safety Initiative.

“This is a great initiative by the container transport and logistics industry to support heavy vehicle safety,” Mr McCormack said.

“Container transport is forecast to double over the next 12 years and with 80% carried by Australian heavy vehicles, it’s vital cargo inside containers is properly secured and not overloaded.”

Delivering the campaign are Container Transport Alliance of Australia, Freight & Trade Alliance and the Australian Peak Shippers Association, with support from ICHCA Australia.

Six supporting online training and information modules were produced by WiseTech Academy covering unsafe container loading, international conventions, heavy vehicle laws, Chain of Responsibility, packing to minimise risk and truck rollover prevention.

NHVR chief executive Sal Petroccitto said the online course and associated resources, including a Safe Container Packing Checklist, would contribute to reducing the risks of load shifts, accidents and mass limit breaches.

Deputy PM McCormack talks about container handing safety. Credit: Office of Michael McCormack and YouTube

“This awareness campaign provides practical steps to ensure that cargo inside shipping containers is packed properly and restrained securely to avoid an accident when the container is transported on a public road,” Mr Petroccitto said.

CTAA director Neil Chambers said the campaign drew on international expertise, including from the Global Shippers Forum and logistics insurer TT Club.

“The online training course and associated resources are for all parties in the container transport logistics chain,” Mr Chamber said.

FTA director and secretary of APSA, Paul Zalai said the initiative provided useful resources. “By providing ready access to both international and Australian best practice guidance on container packing, cargo securing and heavy vehicle safety, we hope to improve safety outcomes,” Mr Zalai said.