New information to help you understand incoming changes to heavy vehicle transport laws
On 1 October 2018, Heavy Vehicle National Law (HVNL) will be amended to make it clear that every party in the supply chain has a duty to ensure the safety of their transport activities.
The current Chain of Responsibility (the Chain) laws have established that any party who has control or influence over a transport task is responsible for complying with HVNL and is held liable if a breach by a driver is detected. The incoming reforms are aiming to move beyond that approach to place a positive and proactive duty of care on all heavy-vehicle supply chain parties.
If you’re a primary producer, any time you send or receive goods using a heavy vehicle with a gross vehicle mass of more than 4.5 tonnes – regardless of the vehicle is yours or someone else’s – you become part of the supply chain, and therefore part of the Chain.
Being part of the Chain means that you have a responsibility to ensure that the transport tasks that you have control or influence over comply with the law.
To help communicate what tasks you may have responsibility for, including what counts as a task that you have control or influence over, the National Heavy Vehicle Regulator (NHVR) has produced a range of resources that can help you understand how these reforms may affect your business.
You can take a look through the full Chain of Responsibility section on the NHVR website, or go directly to the following documents:
- Primary producers and heavy vehicle safety – A fact sheet providing an overview of how the changes could affect primary producers who own and/or operate their own heavy vehicles, as well as primary producers who contract their transport services to another operator
- Common questions about working with upcoming changes to Chain of Responsibility – Responses to common questions about the upcoming changes, including what you can do to make sure your transporter’s activities are compliant and what responsibilities you have to assess your contractor’s compliance.
- More common questions from farmers who contract a heavy vehicle operator – Responses to fundamental questions about the changes in simple terms, including if you are responsible if a driver speeds, if you need to check the driver’s work diary and if you need to be there when the vehicle is loaded.
- Chain of Responsibility checklist – A quick guide to identifying if you’re part of the Chain under HVNL.
If you have any questions about the upcoming amendments to the Chain, you can find contact details for the NHVR on its website.