Female truck drivers in Victoria are to get a one-stop-shop for the support they need on the road with the development of a new smartphone app.
Minister for Training and Skills, Gayle Tierney said the Oz Truck App would provide 24/7 emergency support during breakdowns and crashes, as well as an online forum for drivers to provide peer support; health and wellbeing information; and petrol station, weighbridge and rest-stop finders.
“The app was developed after research undertaken at Wodonga TAFE identified negative cultural perceptions of women in the freight and logistics industry – with women reporting intimidation and bullying by male counterparts, and a desire for more support and training for new female drivers and those of diverse backgrounds,” Ms Tierney said.
“The project will be piloted using 5,000 truck drivers from mid-2021 before being rolled out for free to the broader industry,” she said.
“The Oz Truck App is a great example of TAFEs working with industry in innovative ways – creating great opportunities for Victorians, stronger and more diverse workforces, and addressing skills needs.”
Ms Tierney said as part of the Government’s Women Driving Transport Careers program, Wodonga TAFE developed the app in collaboration with Launchpad App Development, and alongside Australia Post, Linfox, Volvo Group Australia, the Australian Trucking Association and Transport Women Australia.
The Minister said other initiatives to support women in transport careers included a VET ambassador in schools program; a diversity training program for middle managers in trucking organisations; the creation of a modified heavy vehicle training course; and creation of a new truck driver capability framework.