A nationally consistent approach to heavy vehicle safety moved one step closer with the launch of the National Heavy Vehicle Regulator's (NHVR) revised National Heavy Vehicle Inspection Manual by South Australia's Minister for Transport and Infrastructure, Stephen Mullighan at the South Australian Freight Industry Council meeting in Adelaide today.
Minister Mullighan said the manual paved the way for a consistent national approach to heavy vehicle inspections and was a foundation towards improvement in safety across the heavy vehicle industry.
"The importance of this manual can’t be overstated – it will provide a single roadworthiness reference for both authorised officers as well as heavy vehicle operators.
"The manual is the first stage in developing a single national approach to heavy vehicle roadworthiness," he said.
The manual applies to all vehicles with a gross vehicle mass (GVM) or aggregate trailer mass (ATM) greater than 4.5 tonnes and provides transparency about how heavy vehicles will be inspected nationally.
Minister Mullighan said the manual is easier to navigate, visually engaging and features professional technical photographs and detailed diagrams to aid understanding.
"I congratulate the NHVR for the quality and timely delivery of the manual," he said.
NHVR Chief Executive Officer Mr Sal Petroccitto said the manual is the first project to be delivered by the National Heavy Vehicle Roadworthiness Program.
The program seeks to implement nationally-consistent standards for the conduct of inspections, the skills of inspectors, the criteria against which components or sub-systems are inspected and the management and clearance of defects.
"The manual details practical information about wear, damage or change to important components and systems for in-service inspections by owners, operators and administrators in each state and territory.
"Heavy vehicle transport operators can now begin using the manual in routine maintenance programs to improve vehicle standards compliance and help reduce vehicle downtime.
"The NHVR will be assisting operators through building on the 'one manual, everyone's safety' theme, by developing industry focused resources to help integrate the manual into your business," he said.
The manual was developed with extensive industry consultation and through the Transport and Infrastructure Council, all states and territories have agreed to implement the manual into their inspection regimes by 1 July 2016.
"We will continue working with States, Territories and industry to improve roadworthiness and increase heavy vehicle safety," he said.
The National Heavy Vehicle Inspection Manual can be downloaded from www.nhvr.gov.au/nhvim