RMS rejects PSA's heavy vehicle inspection call

NSW Public Service Association criticism "confuses schemes in NSW and Vctoria"

October 7, 2013

Roads and Maritime Services (RMS) has slapped down what it sees as uninformed truck inspection criticism from the New South Wales Public Service Association (PSA).

Director for Customer and Compliance Peter Wells says the PSA has confused two schemes, an accreditation scheme in Victoria and a NSW based examiner scheme.

Wells goes on to make a robust defence on the regulatory scene in his state.

"Roads and Maritime Services has the most comprehensive heavy vehicle inspection system in Australia," he states.

"The transport company at the centre of inspections after a fatal crash on Tuesday is accredited in Victoria under the National Heavy Vehicle Accreditation Scheme which is managed by the National Heavy Vehicle Regulator.

"This means the company is responsible for ensuring its fleet vehicles meet strict safety and compliance regulations.

"This is a completely different scheme to the NSW Heavy Vehicle Authorisation Inspection Scheme which allows low-risk vehicles to be inspected by government-accredited examiners."

He points out that the profile of ‘low risk’ vehicles was determined after consultation with stakeholders including the Centre for Road Safety, Road Freight Advisory Council, Australian Trucking Association, Motor Traders Association and the Institute of Automotive Mechanical Engineers.

"Low risk vehicles such as delivery trucks or vans are generally those which, unlike high risk heavy vehicles, do not travel on our major roads or highways on long hauls," Wells says.

"Inspections of heavy vehicles are required when a vehicle is registered in NSW and then at regular intervals during operation.

"High risk vehicles are checked by Roads and Maritime inspectors while low risk vehicles are inspected by government accredited examiners.

"All of our heavy vehicle compliance checks aim to ensure public safety remains paramount on the road network."

He points out that a 2009 Auditor-General’s Report, Performance Audit Improving Road Safety recommends taking a risk-based approach to inspections to enable more on-road enforcement.

The PSA called last week for an urgent State Government review the safety of outsourcing heavy vehicle checks.

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