Freight and logistics drivers frequently asked questions

Guidance
Frequently asked questions about freight and logistics drivers entering WA by road from interstate.

Last updated: 14 August 2020 at 5.55pm

Questions and answers

The answers to these FAQs are drawn from the Transport, Freight and Logistics Directions. These Directions come into effect at 11.59 pm on 13 August, 2020.

The directions are a legal document and apply according to their terms. Any person who seeks to enter Western Australia as a freight and logistics truck driver must read the Directions and comply with their terms as well as any processes put in place for determining entry to Western Australia.

Transport, freight and logistics operators are encouraged to complete a COVID Safety Plan noting the COVID Safety Plan Guidelines, to ensure they are mitigating the risks of COVID-19. This is a way of ensuring staff are aware of their obligations under the Transport, Freight and Logistics Directions, specifically, the requirements to present for testing and provide evidence of being tested.
Drivers should ensure a copy of their COVID Safety Plan is within their vehicle at all times.

 

 

Why is there a code of practice for regular testing of interstate freight workers coming into WA?

On 7 August 2020, National Cabinet and the WA Government agreed to a code of practice for regular testing of interstate freight drivers to minimise the risk of community transmission of COVID-19 through the freight sector whilst ensuring ongoing efficient supply chains.

The Directions implement the code of practice in Western Australia.

What does a truck driver need to do when they arrive at the WA border?

Any truck driver entering Western Australia by road will need to show evidence of having been tested for COVID-19 in the past 5 days.

If a truck driver arrives at the WA border and has not been tested within the past 5 days – what happens?

If a truck driver is not able to show satisfactory evidence of having been tested in the past 5 days, they must within 48 hours of entering Western Australia either:

  • present for testing at a COVID-19 testing location

          or

  • make other arrangements to be tested for COVID-19, including at a private healthcare provider that offers testing for COVID-19.

Authorised officers at the border will provide drivers with information about COVID-19 testing locations.

In regional WA people can go to a public hospital, health service or remote health clinic to be tested for COVID-19.

Testing locations can be found at: https://healthywa.wa.gov.au/Articles/A_E/COVID-clinics

Testing locations will be continually reviewed.

The truck driver must retain evidence of every test they have for COVID-19, and must produce that evidence for inspection if requested by an authorised officer or certain healthcare workers.

How often does a truck driver need to present for testing for COVID-19 after arriving in WA?

A truck driver must, within 7 days of their last test for COVID-19, either:

  • present for testing at a COVID-19 testing location

          or

  • make other arrangements to be tested for COVID-19, including at a private healthcare provider that offers testing for COVID-19.

A truck driver must comply with this requirement for a period ending 14 days after the day that they enter Western Australia unless the truck driver leaves Western Australia before this time.

For example, if a truck driver is tested on 1 September and then enters Western Australia on 4 September, the truck driver, if they remain in Western Australia, must either present for testing at a COVID-19 testing clinic or make other arrangements to be tested by 8 September. If the truck driver has not left Western Australia by 15 September, they must again either present for testing at a COVID-19 testing clinic or make other arrangements to be tested by this date.

Are there testing facilities at the border? If not, where do I go to get tested and how am I advised?

No, COVID-19 testing facilities are not available at the Western Australian border.

Authorised officers at the border will provide you with information about COVID-19 testing locations.

Truck drivers may also make arrangements to be tested at private healthcare providers that offer testing for COVID-19.

Am I permitted to continue driving and delivering freight while I am awaiting test results or do I have to quarantine?

Yes, drivers may continue delivering freight while awaiting a test result, but must adhere to physical distancing when interacting with others and must keep a record of their close contacts.

How long will it take for my test results to come back?

Test results will be turned around as quickly as possible within the three business day nominated period.

If a truck driver tests positive to COVID-19 what do they need to do?

If a truck driver receives a positive result from a test conducted outside of Western Australia they must:

  • immediately telephone 1300 316 555 and tell the operator that they have been diagnosed with COVID-19 as a result of a test that was conducted outside of Western Australia
  • otherwise isolate and follow directions in the same way as anyone else who receives a positive result in Western Australia.

If a driver receives a positive result from a test conducted within Western Australia , they must also isolate and follow directions in the same way as anyone else who receives a positive result.

If a truck driver is a close contact to somebody who has tested positive to COVID-19 what do they need to do?

If a truck driver is informed by authorities outside of Western Australia that they are a close contact , they must:

  • immediately telephone 1300 316 555 and tell the operator that they have been informed that they are a close contact by authorities outside of Western Australia
  • otherwise quarantine and follow directions in the same way as anyone else who is informed that they are a close contact by authorities in Western Australia.

If a truck driver is informed by authorities in Western Australia that they are a close contact , they must also quarantine and follow directions in the same way as anyone else who is informed that they are a close contact.

If a truck driver develops symptoms of COVID-19, what do they need to do?

If a driver develops or has recently experienced symptoms they must:

  • immediately telephone 1300 316 555 and ask for an instruction 
  • comply with any instruction given

Symptoms of COVID-19 means any one or more of:

  • a fever of 37.5 degrees or above

          or

  • a recent history of fever

          or

  • symptoms of acute respiratory infection (including, not without limitation, shortness of breath, a cough or sore throat)

          or

  • loss of smell or loss of taste.

What records do drivers need to keep of their close contacts whilst in WA?

Whilst in WA, drivers must take all reasonable steps to keep a written record of the following details relating to any person with whom they have close contact:

  • name of the person
  • contact telephone number of the person
  • the date and time when they had close contact
  • the location at which the truck driver had close contact
  • nature of the contact.

Close contacts are deemed people with whom you have had more than 15 minutes of face-to-face contact or have shared the same space with for two hours or more.

This written record must be produced upon request by an authorised officer or certain healthcare workers.

Am I able to undertake essential daily business such as visiting an eatery/venue, visiting shopping centres or grocery stores for supplies while in WA?

Yes, interstate drivers are able to undertake essential daily business including meals and shopping for supplies. They however must:

  • take all reasonable steps to avoid coming within 1.5 metres of another person
  • cough or sneeze into their elbow or a tissue
  • wash their hands often with soap and water or using alcohol hand rub, and particularly before or after eating and after attending a bathroom
  • wear a face mask if available and appropriate when in public or in the same room with one or more other persons
  • when taking a break that involves sleep at premises, remain inside those premises until recommencing driving.

Do I need to get tested upon leaving WA?

No, however, other States and Territories may have their own testing requirements.

How am I advised of my test results?

You will receive a text message from WA Health if the test was taken within WA. If you have been tested by a private pathology provider they will inform you of your test results.

What happens if a driver fails to present for testing under the Directions?

If a driver fails to comply with the Directions, they may commit an offence under the Emergency Management Act 2005 s 86(1). They may be given an infringement notice with a penalty of $1,000, or they may be prosecuted and be liable to imprisonment for up to 12 months or a fine of up to $50,000.

Can a truck driver have passengers in their vehicle during a freight haul?

The truck driver must not allow another person to gain access to or remain inside their vehicle unless the other person is also an exempt traveller who also has responsibility for the provision of transport or freight and logistics services.

What public safety measures must drivers take when they are not driving their vehicles to better protect themselves and others?

Drivers must:

  • take all reasonable steps to avoid coming within 1.5 metres of another person
  • cough or sneeze into their elbow or a tissue
  • wash their hands often with soap and water or using alcohol hand rub, and particularly before or after eating and after attending a bathroom
  • wear a face mask if available and appropriate when in public or in the same room with one or more other persons
  • when taking a break that involves sleep at premises, remain inside those premises until recommencing driving.

Do I need to complete a COVID Safety Plan?

Transport, freight and logistics operators are encouraged to complete a COVID Safety Plan, to ensure they are mitigating the risks of COVID-19. This is a way of ensuring staff are aware of their obligations under the Transport, Freight and Logistics Directions, specifically, the requirements to present for testing and provide evidence of being tested. 

Drivers should ensure a copy of their COVID Safety Plan is within their vehicle at all times.

Page reviewed 14 August 2020