LakeCoal done for COR breach; RTA to remain vigilant

Coal consignor fined $226,000 for chain of responsibility breach; RTA warns it will hold industry accountable for breaches

By Brad Gardner | May 28, 2010

A NSW coal mine has been fined more than $200,000 for breaching chain of responsibility laws for load restraint.

The Roads and Traffic Authority charged LakeCoal as a consignor under the legislation, and the company pleaded guilty to multiple breaches of the law when it fronted court in April this year.

The company had overloaded trucks by more than 10 tonnes in some instances.

"The Newcastle local court imposed fines of totalling $226,000 in addition to $10,000 in professional costs and $2,356 in court costs," a spokesperson for the RTA says.

Following the ruling, the RTA warned the industry it was serious about holding all parties accountable under chain of responsibility.

"Heavy vehicle enforcement in NSW is about community safety and the NSW Government is putting in place the largest and most stringent heavy vehicle enforcement regime in Australia," the spokesperson says.

The roads department now has portable technology fitted to cars that links to the RTA’s infringements database to help officers target rogue drivers and operators.

"The RTA has established a specialist enforcement unit to lead investigations involving multiple parties in the logistics chain," the spokesperson says.

"This unit has initiated more than 150 prosecutions since the first part of these laws were introduced in October 2005."

Chain of responsibility law puts the onus on all parties in the supply chain to ensure truck drivers are not forced to speed, overload trucks or breach fatigue management requirements.

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