Smaller trucking companies on VicRoads radar

By: Brad Gardner


Companies with fleets of 15 to 25 vehicles are continually coming to VicRoads attention during inspection campaigns.

 

VicRoads is working harder to engage with small trucking firms on vehicle maintenance issues, as an increasing number of them are popping up on its radar during inspections.

The department has a policy of forewarning companies about inspections and it is now intending to step up its activities.

VicRoads director of regulatory services Eric Henderson says the department issues letters to owner-operators when it identifies potential maintenance issues and gives them a period of time to present their trucks for inspection.

The move is aimed at giving owners the chance to repair their trucks to a timeline, improve maintenance standards and avoid penalties for defects.

"VicRoads is focused on safety across the industry. We have not targeted companies based on size but in the last six months operators that run approximately 15 to 25 vehicles have come to our attention in random testing," Henderson says.

The policy of informing companies ahead of inspections has been in place for about one year. The amount of notice an operator receives varies depending on the potential issue identified.

"The timing of inspections is dependent upon the risk the potential defects pose to other road users. These inspections are part of our commitment to the safety of all road users by ensuring unroadworthy heavy vehicles are addressed and removed from the roads where necessary," Henderson says.

While small and medium trucking outfits are grabbing a lot of VicRoads’ attention, Henderson makes clear that the government department will not be neglecting the larger end of the transport industry.

"VicRoads doesn’t discriminate against the size of the company. We conduct site inspections on companies of all sizes," he says.

The department recently wrapped up an inspection campaign dubbed Operation Trishula, which put 252 trucks under the microscope.

The results prompted VicRoads to urge trucking companies to pay more attention to vehicle maintenance.

 

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