The National Heavy Vehicle Regulator (NHVR) recently published 5 bulletins on compliance and enforcement within which the regulator highlights the enforcement process for key aspects of the Heavy Vehicle National Law. It also outlines what drivers should expect at the side of the road.
A recent article on PrimeMoverMag.com.au discussed the bulletins which were compiled to assist drivers and operators with national compliance issues specifically relating to vehicle access, dimension, mass and vehicle standards requirements as well as issues relating to carriage and presentation of documents.
The bulletin provides advice on vehicle standards and defect notice requirements, including how to clear a defect notice, methods used to access compliance, advice on mass requirements and information about some of the methods used to assess compliance as well as definitions of Class 1, 2 and 3 heavy vehicles, including mass and dimension limits and breaches of notices and permits.
The article quoted the organisations Chief Executive Sal Petroccitto who explained:
“We know most operators and drivers want to do the right thing,” he said. “Removing any confusion and mystery about how the national law is applied on the road, means operators can spend more time ensuring their drivers, schedulers, loaders and others in the supply chain are focused on better road safety.”
According to the article, the bulletins also outline how offences are categorised. The bulletin is especially useful for truck drivers and operators because it educates them on the type of enforcement action that they can expect to be taken against them before and during a trip if they are non-compliant in any area.
Service providers and police agencies were used to help create the bulletins which would also help to provide clarity about on-road enforcement which can sometimes be a grey area for truckies. In this light industry representatives were consulted during the development of the bulletins, as the following excerpt from the PrimeMoverMag.com.au explains:
The NHVR developed the bulletins with NHVR Service Providers and police agencies to promote transparency and consistency in on-road enforcement. The information has been road-tested with industry representatives and their feedback incorporated.
“All parties are aiming for the same outcome in the same circumstances, because then everyone knows what’s expected and that ultimately means better safety outcomes,” Petroccitto said.
Copies of the bulletin can be downloaded from the NHVR website.
If you are interested in downloading the bulletin, you can do so from the NHVR website here
While the bulletins as well as other similar initiatives are useful in providing members of the industry with guidelines and advice on how to comply with the law, it is every transport employers’ responsibility to ensure their employees have received the necessary training to be aware of and abide by Chain of Responsibility (COR) legislation.
Unfortunately even with best control measures in place, employers in the transport industry are at a major disadvantage if all their employees aren’t aware of the law and their duties under it. According to COR legislation, everyone involved in the supply chain has a duty of care to ensure the safety of the heavy vehicle, however without the proper training employees will not be aware of their responsibilities and may end up costing the company thousands of dollars and perhaps even resulting in an accident which could cost someone their life.