Drought heavy vehicle access

NSW Class 3 Drought Assistance Dimension Exemption Notice

The NSW Class 3 Drought Assistance Dimension Exemption Notice exempts eligible vehicles from complying with certain dimension requirements when transporting baled or rolled hay to be used as fodder for consumption by livestock in declared drought affected areas in New South Wales.

Heavy vehicle operators transporting drought relief hay in NSW are encouraged to utilise access available under the:

For more details as well as specific information referred to in the notices, please read the New South Wales Class 3 Baled Commodities Dimension Exemption Operators Guide (PDF, 1.7MB).

If you do not comply with the conditions of access in either notice, operators are encouraged to apply for an access permit through the NHVR Portal.

Further information on different access options as well as other support available to drought affected farmers can be found on the NSW Roads and Maritime Services website at www.rms.nsw.gov.au/drought-freight

Access permit payment exemption

The NHVR has introduced a permit payment exemption to operators transporting drought relief products to and from drought affected areas.

The following freight types will be accepted as part of the payment exemption:

  • fodder freight (can include fodder used in maintenance and feeding of cattle, sheep, goats, deer, pigs, chickens, working and breeding horses)
  • water cartage freight (includes water carted for stock and supply for emergency animal welfare needs)
  • stock relocating due to drought conditions
  • emergency water infrastructure.

For more information about eligibility and documentation please read the Drought relief - Access permit payment exemption (PDF, 188KB).

The NHVR is also prioritising drought relief access permits. In order for the NHVR to identify and prioritise your drought relief access request please ensure you list the word DROUGHT in your "Create a new permit application – Reference" and within the "Additional comments and declaration" field of your application.

All access permit applications can be made through the NHVR Portal.

Drought means more trucks on roads

As part of the drought there may be more trucks on roads across regional areas to bring essential supplies to farming communities.

If you’re a motorist

  • Patient drivers are safe drivers. Trucks accelerate slowly as they have to move through 10 or more gears and weigh more than cars, so stay patient as they get up to speed.
  • Trucks need space. Heavy vehicles need twice as much room to brake as a car. So give them plenty of space and don’t cut too close in front.
  • It takes two to turn. If a truck is turning, sit back and don’t overtake. Trucks are allowed to (and need to) use two lanes when turning corners or going through roundabouts safely.

If you’re a heavy vehicle operator

  • Do a daily heavy vehicle check.
  • Make sure your truck is in a roadworthy condition.
  • Check your load is properly restrained.
  • Know your heavy vehicle journey.
  • Don’t drive distracted.
  • Drive to the conditions and don’t speed.

For more information see Drought fact sheet (PDF, 510KB).