As a trusted authority providing information, advice and support on transport technologies and data, Transport Certification Australia (TCA) has recently seen exciting growth in the number of vehicles offering newer and modified applications, features and services through the National Telematics Framework (NTF).

These new offerings focus on the needs of a range of stakeholders, and the requirements for different levels of assurance, based on state and territory conditions of road use. 

Having more data at your fingertips with invaluable insights on the operational activities of your business is crucial for better decision-making, a safer workforce, and increased productivity. 

Most businesses know this, and logistics companies are increasingly using technology, such as GPS tracking and connected sensors—collectively called telematics—to improve safe and efficient driver behaviour, improve vehicle use, manage maintenance planning and hone forecasting.

The intelligent use of transport technology and data analytics can also help to increasingly optimise and support policy and regulatory reform, road network planning and investment, and operational decisions for road managers. 

Having vehicles participating in monitoring through the NTF, and fitted with telematics devices, allows secure collection and management of data, its analysis and reporting for invaluable insights to road managers and other decision-makers.

TCA has also launched analytics for road managers, to support the use of de-identified and aggregated vehicle movement data, for example showing average speed, and journey ‘heat maps’, for state and local governments.

The NTF now supports a suite of telematics applications with different levels of assurance, where Level 1 Assurance is the lowest and Level 3 Assurance is the highest, with evidentiary quality data as needed. This aims to accommodate a diverse range of purposes to meet stakeholder needs. 

There are now many operating arrangements (also known as schemes) across Australia in almost all states using TCA’s telematics applications.

Different schemes support specific uses of applications linked to delivering policy objectives. TCA’s newer service offerings cater to the evolving needs of transport operators, service providers and jurisdictional authorities.  

These service offerings include: 

Telematics Analytics Platform (TAP)

TAP is a secure national web portal for authorised users. It supports authorities, including road managers and policy makers, by providing secure access to telematics data for improved road safety, transport efficiency, freight productivity, asset management and sustainability. 

TCA has expanded data reporting and analysis services through TAP in response to the needs of stakeholders for on-demand access to telematics data. Common analytical reports available in TAP include journey counts, unique vehicle counts and average speed by road. 

Road Infrastructure Management (RIM) application 

RIM is a low-cost application that provides a new way of collecting road use data, allowing transport operators to use whatever telematics devices and systems they have in their vehicle, rather than requiring certified devices. Offering RIM as one of the newer low-level assurance applications has encouraged new service providers and suppliers to enter the NTF for the first time. It has also increased the availability of low-cost monitoring, potentially substantially increasing the size of the data pool for analytics.

New and existing operating arrangements in place using the RIM application in NSW include the Safety, Productivity, Construction and Environment Transport Scheme (SPECTS), Port Botany Container Movement Efficiency Scheme and Oversize Overmass (OSOM) Vehicle Movements Scheme.  

Telematics Monitoring Application (TMA)

TMA is a mid-point, flexible, cost effective approach to managing vehicle access using telematics. TMA monitors parameters of location, time and identity, and has optional features that include the monitoring of mass and vehicle configuration, or the self-declaration of data through a user interface. As with RIM, transport operators may be able to use their existing telematics systems in TMA. 

Sitting in the middle of the assurance spectrum, TMA has a light audit regime, and aims to provide assured data, at the lowest cost. While not evidentiary in quality, the data is sufficient to monitor many higher risk vehicles and tasks.

Current operating arrangements using TMA include Hill Descent Monitoring (WA), Higher Mass Limits (NSW), Special Purpose Vehicle (SPV) Monitoring Scheme (TAS) and PBS Vehicle Monitoring Scheme (TAS).

Use of the RIM application and TMA is commonly associated with heavy restricted access vehicles, or some form of concession to a road condition, such as mass or dimension monitoring.

Interested in using or offering RIM or TMA through the National Telematics Framework? Visit tca.gov.au/rim and tca.gov.au/tma.

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