Since 1 July 2015 all J (body mounting) and P (tow coupling, fifth wheel and king pin installation) code heavy vehicle modifications must now be certified and approved by an approved vehicle examiner (AVE).
NHVR CEO Sal Petroccitto said that previously not all jurisdictions required that fitment of couplings and bodies be certified and the new arrangement contributes to national consistency in vehicle standards and safety.
"This change ensures that J and P Code modifications are treated the same way nationally and are being approved to the same safety standards", Mr Petroccitto said.
"The fitment of various types of bodies and equipment can substantially alter the original heavy vehicle design. The development and fitment of such equipment should be carried out by a qualified person and the work then needs to be certified and approved by an AVE.
"Once an AVE has approved the vehicle, a modification plate will be attached that clearly identifies when and who undertook the fitment and that the modification has been undertaken safely and in accordance with the National Code of Practice for Heavy Vehicle Modifications, Vehicle Standards Bulletin 6 (VSB6).
"Certification of these modifications will also reduce the need for trucks to be re-inspected and certified when changing ownership or transferring between states and territories", said Mr Petroccitto.
Under the Heavy Vehicle National Law any modification undertaken to a vehicle after it is deemed to be complete (manufacture date) must be done in accordance with the NHVR Code of Practice for the Approval of Heavy Vehicle Modifications (PDF, 655KB) which applies VSB6 as a modification standard.
For modifications that are not able to be undertaken within VSB6, an operator must seek approval from the NHVR to undertake the modification.
Further information is available in the Heavy Vehicle J and P Code Modifications fact sheet which can be found at www.nhvr.gov.au/hvmodifications