Inspection requirements for heavy vehicles are detailed in the National Heavy Vehicle Inspection Manual (NHVIM). While this document sets the inspection requirements used to test brake performance, the NHVIM does not contain a procedure for conducting these tests using a roller brake test (RBT) machine. It has been recognised that a uniform national roller brake testing procedure is required.
New National RBT procedure
The NHVR has recently conducted a series of trials, in conjunction with NSW Roads and Maritime Services (RMS), Heavy Vehicle Industry Australia (HVIA) and the Australian Trucking Association (ATA) to gain better understanding of how real world heavy vehicle brake performance relates to test results for roller brake machines. As a result of these trials, the NHVR has now developed a National procedure for in-service brake testing using a roller brake test machine.
National RBT procedure rollout
The NHVR recognises that in order to conduct a RBT in accordance with the new National RBT procedure, certain equipment and software updates may be required and inspectors will need to become accustomed to the procedure. To address this, the new National RBT procedure will be rolled out in two stages.
Stage one of rollout will start from 1 February 2018 and will require RBT machines to be updated, where necessary, to provide both dynamic and static test results
Once stage one RBT machine updates have been completed, brake performance test must be done in accordance with the alternative phase in procedure outlined in the Phasing in the National roller brake testing procedure (PDF, 1.3MB).
Government operated inspection stations
The NHVR has provided a period of three months for the stage 1 updates to be made to Government operated RBT machine. During this three month period, Authorised Officers (AOs) will commence using the National RBT procedure once the equipment they use has been updated. Until the updates are made, AOs will continue to use current jurisdiction protocols.
It is expected that all Government operated inspection stations will have received these updates by 30 April 2018.
Third Party Inspection Stations
It is anticipated that third party inspection stations, such as approved inspection stations (AIS), will receive the updates as part of the scheduled service and calibration inspections of their RBT machines. The NHVR will be working with States and Territories to provide additional information about the introduction of the National RBT procedure in the near future.
Stage two of the rollout will require software updates be made to the RBT machines.
The NHVR is currently working with RBT machine manufacturers to develop the required software updates, and will provide further information about the roll out of these updates when it is available.
For more information about the New National RBT Procedure please refer to VSG21 - National roller brake testing procedure (PDF, 229KB).