Road authorities to offer grace period for strugglers

The State road authorities have hinted at offering a sanction instead of an infringement notice in accreditation issues

Road authorities to offer grace period for strugglers
Road authorities are showing some flexibility

State road authorities in New South Wales, Victoria and South Australia have acknowledged strong industry concern over extended "evidence of accreditation" provisions and say they will provide some leeway to operators struggling with this unnecessary burden.

Roads and Maritime Services in NSW, Victoria’s VicRoads and Queensland’s Transport and Main Roads have indicated  that there will be understanding involved in enforcement but the message is slightly different from each state.  

"The new Heavy Vehicle National Law (HVNL) and regulations starts next week and will include a new requirement for drivers operating under maintenance or mass management accreditation to carry specific documentation," an RMS spokesperson says.

"As this is a new requirement, Roads and Maritime Services will provide drivers with 14 days to comply instead of issuing a sanction."

While a moratorium has been sought, Queensland is among the closest to giving it.

"We will work closely with the National Transport Commission and the National Heavy Vehicle Regulator [NHVR) to address this issue as a matter of priority," Transport and Main Roads spokesperson says. 

"Until the legislation is amended, enforcement officers and Queensland Police will only enforce drivers operating under fatigue accreditation."

This supports the Queensland Transport Association’s understanding from earlier in the week.

"Discussions by QTA Ltd with Transport and Main Roads suggests that enforcement of the ‘must carry’ provision will not be a priority but rather a focus will be maintained on safety related Road Law, Work Diaries, Mass and Maintenance obligations," QTA President Warren Woods said earlier in the week.

Those seeking clues about the attitude at VIcRoads to the national regulator may gain it from the language used in its response.

The NHVR has advised operators that it will be directing roadside inspectors to make use of warnings, rather than infringements, during the period after the law commences," a VicRoads spokesperson says.

VicRoads is a service provider to the NHVR and will be following any instructions issued by the Regulator on the approach to compliance and enforcement with regard to this matter.


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