Reflecting on our experience at the 125th LGAQ Conference 2021

Written by: David Swords, Risk Consultant.

After a whirlwind of follow-ups and catchup ups, time for a quick check-in in the rear-view mirror.

The 125th LGAQ Conference in Mackay was a fantastic opportunity to get out of Brisbane and see existing customers, prospects and refresh older acquaintances. It was also an opportune time as we had just finished building our mobile display, so what better way than to drive up to Mackay with the gear in the back. A steady pace from Brisbane to Rockhampton via the Sunshine Coast to pick up the kit on Saturday, a cracking coffee at the ‘Hatch’ in Gympie is well worth the stop to be safe and break up your drive. Not much to do for lunch post 2pm in Gin Gin, but an excellent firework display put on by Rockhampton City Council for me on my arrival – not really for me, the ‘Rockhampton River Festival’ was in full swing, with entertainment stalls and lots more. 

On Sunday, I took a leisurely cruise to Mackay airport to collect Scott, and we were primed for bump in at 2pm on Sunday. Tip of the hat to the LGAQ team and the crew at MECC, for allowing us to reverse straight in and drop all of our gear at the foot of our stand. We were all unpacked and running within an hour!

Over the course of the conference, we had a fantastic amount of interest and started many safety discussions about how we can help Councils be safer and save money to be used in service delivery in other areas of their respective LGA’s.

From curious Councillors, Mayors and CEO’s, the genuine surprise at the sophistication of the technology, the program and service levels were widely regarded and appreciated. 

We certainly don’t like it to be a product sale and see you later, more a together on a journey – establishing partnerships. We appreciated the feedback and the insights shared with us, and yes, we will change the driver’s seat 😉

As a snapshot, we were discussing the potential for savings from existing Council expenditure on fleet and based on our depth of knowledge and service capability, we know as an average that the Australian fleet can achieve an ROI of $3.60 as an average and the lower end of the spectrum has been $2.0 This translated into a pure net saving of between $400k and $700k over three years. An interesting proposition for any fleet.

Overall, this will be the first of many visits to LGAQ and other association events and forums as well the National Congress events in the years ahead, we look forward to seeing fresh faces and old alike. In the spirit of this year’s theme ‘Together’ we hope we can assist you to save lives, reduce incidents and save money ‘together’ through our driver safety program.

Safety is a constant theme we all have a part to play in, distraction and inattentive driving can catch up with us all, for every 1 major vehicle collision, your fleet will have had about 29 minor collisions, which are actually preceded by about 300 No damage risky incidents – called near collisions (or near misses).  And these are usually involving risk-taking actions such as speeding, tailgating, mobile phone usage etc.

It’s not worth the risk to you, your staff, your family, or the wider community. This was very evident to me on Thursday morning’s drive home, seeing a vehicle on its side in the cane field on a dry, straight, flat section of highway. What could have caused that? Mechanical malfunction, animal on road, texting and driving? we may never know, though statistically, the percentages according to published data are 7% mechanical, 10% road conditions and 83 % human error.

Stay safe, Drive safe.

Until the next event,

Cheers (I may not drive to Melbourne or Canberra 😊)

Dave.

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