The National Heavy Vehicle Regulator (NHVR) has announced that starting on 1 August 2016 it will conduct the largest ever health check on the mechanical condition of Australia’s heavy vehicle fleet. Approximately 1.7% of the heavy vehicles across Australia will be inspected by Authorised Officers within each jurisdiction.
According to the NHVR, data from the survey will help it find ways to improve the safety of the Australian heavy vehicle fleet, which will benefit everyone who uses our nation’s roads.
This initiative is important for a number of reasons
- It is really an indication of things to come in the enforcement area. The NHVR is now providing national co-ordination to such activities, which previously would have been conducted by jurisdictions separately
- The NHVR is now determining and applying defined criteria for co-ordinated activities. Previously, jurisdictions would have applied their own criteria, which in the past has been inconsistent and on occasions questionable (such as the RMS raids requiring unloading sites to inspect work diaries of in-bound drivers)
- Outcomes of such activities will now been pooled into a central database, instead of jurisdictions having separate databases, providing authorities with national trends (e.g. A particular business having multiple offences)
- The vehicle health check comes in the midst of the preparation of equipment maintenance as part of COR and will no doubt reflect the need for this to progress
Again this highlights the need for any business operating trucks internally or via outsourced providers to have a formal system like the LSS COR System to manage their supply chain COR responsibilities. Incidents may well still occur, but the extent to which a business can prove that it is taking all reasonable steps to manage COR will determine the extent to which any such incident results in fines and prosecutions.