Post is now briefing transport drivers regarding the introduction of AOD in transport depots.
The Road Transport and Distribution and Long Distance Operations Road Safety Remuneration Order 2014 has come into effect requiring drug and alcohol testing for drivers of vehicles of 4.5 GVM and over.
Post originally wanted to perform AOD testing on all employees performing “safety sensitive” roles; ie PDOs, van drivers, forklift drivers etc.
The NSW CEPU Branch recommended AOD testing should be done on transport drivers. Post agreed to this suggestion. Further discussions will take place on a national level regarding the other “safety sensitive” roles.
AOD testing has been in construction, mining, maritime and airline industries for years. There have been several accidents involving heavy vehicles, which have resulted in serious injuries and fatalities that has brought about this legislation. Community groups now expect heavy vehicle drivers to be tested.
The National Office discussed the Post AOD policy with several key unions who have had a policy in place for years.
In the majority of workplaces covered by these unions if a driver or worker tests positive they are dismissed immediately. In the Post policy drivers are taken through the Employee Counseling and Discipline Policy (ECDP) if they test positive. Key unions saw this as a significant achievement negotiated at the national level.
Further, unions noted that the site supervisor in Post depots will always be tested at each site where testing occurs. This does not happen in these other industries.
Once testing commences in Post transport depots, technicians from the external testing agency Drug and Alcohol Solutions Australia will chose a site and test drivers (chosen randomly) for a 2-hour window.
Transport drivers who have contacted the National Office regarding the policy stated they thought it was only a matter of time before an AOD policy was implemented in Post. They also said that the policy negotiated on the national level was fair and reasonable.
National discussions will commence in the near future regarding the other “safety sensitive” roles in Post. State Branch’s will be invited to attend these discussions.