IT'S good news for Central and North Queensland beef producers and processors with the Department of transport announcing type 1 road trains will be allowed to travel through Rockhampton from July 1.
Previously type-one road trains, which are made up of two 40-foot trailers, have had to downsize at the CQLX before heading into town and onto the Teys Lakes Creek or JBS Rocky Plant.
By law they are required to drop one trailer before heading into town, meaning two single trips had to be made to the meatworks, or cross-load stock onto B-doubles, which is considered one of the most dangerous activities in the cattle transport industry.
Not being able to travel through town in a type-one road train means added costs to processors and producers arriving from western selling centres. It also means an additional two hours per load in labour to move cattle from one vehicle to another.
A report released by The Department of Transport reported with 500,000 cattle on average transported through Rockhampton and onto the meatworks in a year, the restriction on type-one road trains means thousands of cattle freight movements.
The latest announcement does not affect cattle travelling north or south along the Bruce Hwy but it will improve animal welfare and product outcome on cattle drawn from central, west and northern Queensland.
Not to mention the improvement in efficiency and the decrease in overall transport movements.
The approval also reduces the need for cross-loading during trips to the meatworks, which involves operators positioning trailers together and with the use of sliding gates, push cattle from one trailer deck to another.
Central Queensland Regional Manager for AgForce Sharon Howard says this means producers will enjoy lower producers will enjoy lower transport costs, safer livestock transport and better meat quality in their herd.
"Drivers will see less trucks on the roads because we have the ability to transport more cattle per truck," she said.
Ms Howard said it was good to see cross loading would no longer be needed.
"Trucks will be able to travel from Western Queensland direct to the meat works without cross loading, saving freight costs," she said.
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