Earthmoving News, Trucks & Utes, Workplace Health & Safety

NHVR launches heavy vehicle safety operation

The National Heavy Vehicle Regulator (NHVR) is launching an on-road targeted operation focused on heavy vehicle safety

The regulator will focus on mechanical safety and operator compliance with the mass, dimension and loading requirements of heavy vehicles working in the construction industry.

Set to run for four weeks, the operation will run across New South Wales, Queensland, Victoria, South Australia, ACT and Tasmania.

“Throughout the operation, we will prioritise education in the first instance to ensure operators and drivers have a clear understanding of the risks associated with non-compliance during heavy vehicle transport activities in the construction industry, and know how to manage them,” NHVR chief operating officer Paul Salvati says.

“Drivers and operators should always be practicing safe behaviours, such as implementing a daily check list to ensure the mechanical safety of vehicles, or utilising measuring devices, such as tape measures or height sticks, to confirm the vehicle and its load are within allowable dimensions.

“Managing safety risks can help prevent injuries and fatalities, avoid financial loss for the business, evade legal sanctions, enhance business reputation, and create a culture where informed safety decisions are made.”

In 2023’s operation period (March 1 – April 15), NHVR’s on-road officers inspected more than 1,200 vehicles, according to Salvati.

“Overall, 56.4 per cent of heavy construction vehicles were compliant across all HVNL categories, with especially high compliance across mass and loading,” he says.

“The results however, in the mechanical compliance category were indicative of the work we still have to do.

“Of the defective components identified, the most serious were in brakes, body and chassis, while others were found in lights and reflectors.”

All operators and drivers working in the construction industry are urged to keep safety a top priority.

“Heavy vehicle hazards in the construction industry traditionally include loads not being properly restrained, vehicles exceeding mass or dimension limits and of course, the mechanical safety of vehicles, especially heavy rigid truck and trailer combinations,” Salvati says.

“These may seem like standard risks, but they are amplified – especially on a construction site – by time pressures, constant loading and unloading, and the frequency of travel alongside other motorists on major roads and thoroughfares.”

More NHVR news: NHVR launches National Network Map

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