South African National Accreditation System (SANAS) launched a new accreditation programme for Road Transport Management System (RTMS) Certification on the 19th of March 2015 in Pretoria. The roll out of this new accreditation programme for Road Transport Management System (RTMS) for certification bodies is the result of work done by a SANAS working group of technically knowledgeable experts who developed the SANAS Technical Requirements that addresses scope of accreditation and the minimum qualification and experience required in the RTMS. Stakeholders that are involved in road freight and passenger transportation who will be implementing RTMS and require certification, as well as certification bodies and other relevant stakeholders such as representatives the Department of Transport and RTMS National Steering Committee attended the launch.

SANAS -RTMS

Mr Oliver Naidoo, Dr Paul Nordengen, Mr Tumelo Ledimo and Mr Adrian Van Tonder

BACKGROUND
Despite concerted and ongoing efforts for an effective law enforcement strategy by the road and traffic authorities, the sharp increase in heavy vehicle traffic and the effects of overloading continue
to be a major problem on South African roads. Overloading causes premature road deterioration and, together with inadequate vehicle maintenance, high levels of driver fatigue and poor driver
health care programs, contributes significantly to South Africa’s poor road safety record.
In view of the above the South African road freight and passenger transportation industry started to look at a possible solution and the finalisation of the Road Transport Management System (RTMS) SANS 1395 and the SANAS accreditation programme for Road Transport Management System(RTMS) Certification is considered to be a mile stone for the industry and for stakeholders that are involved in the sector.

SELF REGULATION
Dr Paul Nordengen, from the CSIR explained that the Road Transport Management System (RTMS) is a self-regulation initiative that has already shown outstanding results since its implementation and supports the Department of Transport’s National Overload Control Strategy. He pointed out that the objective of the implementation of RTMS is meant to contribute positively to road safety, preserving the road infrastructure and increasing productivity. Some of the benefits that have been achieved by the over 8000 RTMS certified vehicles and can be achieved by others include:
• A reduction and minimisation of overloading
• Prevention road damage and preserving our infrastructure
• Enhancing the safety of heavy vehicles on our national roads
• Taking care of truck drivers’ health (Driver Wellness Initiatives)
• Reduction of traffic violations (e.g. reducing speeding incidents)
• Improving efficiency in various industry supply chains
• Active promotion skills development within the transport sector, and
• Companies measuring their performance and taking responsibility for the impact of their activities on our public road networks

ROAD TRANSPORT MANAGEMENT SYSTEM (RTMS) SANS 1395 CERTIFICATION Mr Oliver Naidoo is of the view that the implementation of this SANS 1395 family of standards will play a critical role in the economic growth by ensuring efficient road freight transport between the country’s centres of production and its shipping ports vice versa, which boosts competitiveness.

He explained that each organisation, Consignor/Consignee or Operator, that implement SANS 1395, will be required to develop appropriate processes, systems and measurement methods that would enable it to demonstrate compliance to this standard. He also advised that it is imperative that RTMS is implemented in a manner that is sustainable and that will achieve the following objectives:
– Improved road safety,
– the reduction of road crashes,
– the optimised payload efficiency,
– the maintenance of roadworthy vehicles, and
-improved driver wellness and training.

Mr Adrian van Tonder who is the RTMS National Steering Committee Chairperson gave a presentation on the history of the RTMS, the RTMS Scheme Rules and the scheme structure as well as the RTMS symbols. The work on RTMS started in 2004 with a Programme called Load Accreditation Programme (LAP). In 2006 the name was changed to RTMS. From 2007 until today RTMS certified vehicles on South Africa’s roads has grown from 74 to over 8000. He also emphasised as with the Dr Nordengen that RTMS is an industry-led, government-supported, voluntary, selfregulation scheme. On the scheme structure he detailed the relationships between the RTMS scheme owner, the consignor/consignee/operators, the certification bodies and SANAS.

SANAS also explained the requirements for the accreditation of certification bodies as specified in ISO/SANS 17021 and in the SANAS Technical Requirements (TR 22-01) document.