From 10 February, the Heavy Vehicle National Law (HVNL) requires drivers of any vehicle that is accredited under any module of the National Heavy Vehicle Accreditation Scheme (NHVAS) to carry certain documents with them.
Drivers of heavy vehicles accredited under the mass or maintenance module of the National Heavy Vehicle Accreditation Scheme (NHVAS), must now carry:
- a copy of the operator's accreditation certificate(s) for each relevant module; and
- a document which states that the driver: is operating under the operator’s accreditation; has been inducted into the operator’s relevant management system; and meets the requirements relating to drivers operating under the operator’s heavy vehicle accreditation. This document must be signed by the vehicle operator.
The new requirements for mass and maintenance management are similar to existing requirements for fatigue management (BFM and AFM). There is no change to BFM or AFM.
NHVR CEO, Richard Hancock, welcomed the work being undertaken by Australian road transport operators to bring themselves into compliance with this new requirement.
“I understand, however, the challenges that some operators are facing in implementing this change to their business practices, particularly as this change directly affects drivers.
“I am committed to ensuring that operators and drivers across the country have a reasonable opportunity to comply with the law, while still having regard to road safety outcomes.
“The NHVR has issued instructions to state and territory road transport authorities, whose inspectors carry out compliance activities on the NHVR’s behalf. The NHVR’s instructions set in place a six-month transitional period for compliance and enforcement of these new requirements under the HVNL,” said Mr Hancock. Under these arrangements:
- For one month from 10 February to 9 March 2014, state and territory transportinspectors will initially issue warnings if drivers cannot produce the required NHVAS Mass and Maintenance documentation.
- From 10 March to 9 August 2014, state and territory transport inspectors will continue to issue warnings for all first-offences. Once a driver has received one or more warnings, from 10 March, they or their responsible operator may face enforcement action for any further non-compliance.
Operators and drivers must at all times continue to comply with the continuing requirements to carry Basic Fatigue Management and Advanced Fatigue Management documentation.
To help operators prepare their documents, the NHVR has created an Induction approval template (DOC, 225KB) that operators can complete and issue to drivers operating under their accreditation.
“Operators can edit our template or create a document of their own, but we encourage them to start filling it out as soon as possible so drivers can comply with the new rule book,” said Mr Hancock.