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Victoria and New South Wales continue to defer curfews

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Duo follows Queensland in extending delivery lockout suspension

Victoria and New South Wales continue to defer curfews
Rob Stokes

 

Delivery curfew exemptions have been extended in Victoria and New South Wales.

Originally introduced as a measure to deal with supermarket shortages at the height of Covid-19 panic buying, the Victorian Department of Transport advises of an extension of the Ministerial Order suspending the application of truck curfew and loading zone signs for heavy vehicles transporting food and personal hygiene products.

The order, issued under the Road Safety Act, allows the delivery of food items or personal hygiene products at any time of the day to premises where the public may purchase those goods.

The original order was issued for six months and expired on September 21.

The extension expires on December 31, 2020, a decision that has been welcomed by the Victorian Transport Association (VTA).

"We wrote to the government in August requesting the Order be extended in order to ensure transport operators were able to provide Victorian consumers with uninterrupted access to food, groceries, household goods, medicine and other personal effects, in consideration of the Stage 3 and 4 Covid-19 lockdowns in place throughout the state," VTA CEO Peter Anderson says.

"Since the original order was made, the transport industry has demonstrated it can operate safely on roads that have previously had access restricted, which is a credit to the professionalism of operators and their drivers.

"We applaud the Government for heeding VTA and industry advice to extend the Order, which will now expire on 31 December 2020."

Meanwhile, New South Wales goes even further, extending its orders for another six months, until March 25, 2021.

"Our quick response to the immediate challenges of the pandemic ensured everyone had access to essential household goods, businesses remained viable and the economy kept ticking," planning minister Rob Stokes says.

"Six months down the track, it’s obvious we still need this flexibility.

"The pandemic has taught us that we can be nimble and reduce red tape where necessary.

"We have to live with the virus for a little while yet, so we’ve extended these orders and will review them before the new expiry date in March next year."

Stokes adds that extended operating hours for the construction industry, introduced to ensure Covid-Safe working conditions, will also continue.

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