Transport for NSW response to COVID-19 for the freight industry

Latest update, 6:10pm, Saturday 19 September 2020

NSW has temporarily closed its border with Victoria to limit the spread of COVID-19

Road and Rail Freight

Freight and transport operators require a current border entry permit issued by Service NSW to enter NSW from Victoria.

As announced in the national Freight Movement Code for the Domestic Border Controls – Freight Movement Protocol (the Code) and as part of a key strategy to reduce the spread of Coronavirus, freight operators are required to have a COVID-19 Safety Plan and drivers are encouraged to undertake voluntary COVID-19 testing on a rolling seven day basis. 

NSW freight COVID-19 testing locations

To help you and your drivers take a free COVID-19 test every seven days, we have established pop-up testing locations in NSW.

The following locations are open:

  • Narrandera Roadhouse, Newell Highway. Open 24 hours per day 7 days a week
  • Tarcutta truck change over yard, Sydney Street, off Hume Highway. Open 24 hours per day 7 days a week
  • Taree Service Centre, Pacific Highway. Open 9am-3pm from Monday 21 September.

Process for testing

On arriving at the testing site, drivers will be required to identify themselves by providing name, driver licence number and contact details, including mobile number for test result notification.  A sample will be taken and results will be provided back to drivers to their mobile number. 

At Narrandera and Tarcutta sites between 9am to 4pm each day, staff will be on-site to conduct tests. Between 4pm to 9am a telehealth service will be available. Teleheath involves off-site medical staff supporting freight workers to carry out tests. Freight workers will contact medical staff via your own device and will be supervised and supported while they take a test themselves. 

Testing results are expected to take up to 48 hours.  

We are reminding all operators to be conscious of the significantly increased health risk in Victoria, to please take extra care and ensure that you are vigilant in practising physical distancing, minimising contact and maintaining good hygiene practices to limit the spread of the Coronavirus.  

Operators are reminded that any worker who is feeling unwell or displaying any symptoms of COVID-19 should not attend work, should be tested immediately and must self-isolate while waiting for results.

While all efforts are being made to ensure freight moves as efficiently as possible, operators are encouraged to plan ahead as some delays may be experienced and to factor this into fatigue management plans.

Go to the Live Traffic website for the latest traffic information.

Air and sea freight

NSW ports and airports remain open for freight imports and exports and Australian Border Force advice supports vessels and aircraft arriving in Australian ports, subject to meeting specified criteria.

The Port Authority of New South Wales will continue to follow the advice set by Federal and State governments in relation to the entry of commercial vessels to the ports of NSW. Please note that the Public Health (COVID-19 Maritime Quarantine) Order (No 2) 2020 and Exemption to the Public Health Order (PDF, 272.37 KB) provide additional requirements for vessels entering NSW ports. See Transport for NSW’s Maritime Freight Factsheet (PDF, 264.35 KB) – Information for Maritime Freight on Coronavirus Public Health Order and Exemption.

For further information on the requirements for air travel please refer to the Public Health (COVID-19 Air Transportation Quarantine) Order (No 2) 2020.

The NSW Government has announced a range export support measures for NSW businesses which can be found at NSW Treasury. Information on the International Freight Assistance Mechanism for air freight agricultural and fisheries exports can be found on the Austrade and the websites.

Public Health Orders

To deal with the public health risk of COVID-19 and its possible consequences, the Minister for Health and Medical Research has made a number of Orders, under section 7 of the Public Health Act 2010.

The Public Health (COVID-19 Border Control) Order 2020, restricts the movement of people from Victoria to NSW.

The Public Health (COVID-19 Restrictions on Gathering and Movement) Order sets out the restrictions on individuals and businesses in relation to certain activities. A gathering for the purposes of or relating to transportation is an essential gathering and therefore the restrictions on gatherings in the Order do not apply.

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Interstate border travel restrictions

Border restrictions have changed in Queensland, with all freight operators, including those in heavy vehicles, now required to hold and display a Queensland border pass on the passenger side visor, lower-left windscreen or passenger-side dashboard. Please note that these permits last seven days and you will need to make a new application after this time.

There are additional restrictions on any person who has been in a COVID-19 hotspot in the past 14 days. For information regarding operators performing an essential activity, including transport, freight and logistics, visit the link below.

Border restrictions also remain in place for South Australia, Western Australia, the Northern Territory and Tasmania, with exemptions for freight.

NSW road freight links

The National Heavy Vehicle Regulator (NHVR) Coronavirus page
Information on the NHVR’s response to Coronavirus including information on state border restrictions and required entry border forms

The National Heavy Vehicle Regulator (NHVR) new online map
Online map of service centres, truck stops and roadhouses that remain open for heavy vehicle drivers

NSW road network maps and approved roads
Interactive maps are available for road freight transport vehicles, special purpose vehicles and load carrying vehicles

NSW rest area map
The online rest areas map provides information for heavy vehicle rest area locations for major roads across NSW