Toughest heavy vehicle inspection regime in Austra

Toughest heavy vehicle inspection regime in Australia: more than 3 million checks a year

4 February 2014

Roads Minister Duncan Gay today reminded motorists there was no tougher state than NSW when it comes to heavy vehicle enforcement and inspections.

"We have a heavy vehicle inspection force in its own right in NSW – with more than 280 front line inspectors and investigators," Minister Gay said.

"They carry out more than 3 million screenings through checking stations and more than 300,000 intercepts and detailed inspections each year.

"This is the largest and most comprehensive enforcement and compliance regime in the country.

"We have 200 fixed roadside inspection sites, 8 heavy vehicle checking stations across regional NSW, inspection Stations in Sydney at Campbelltown, Penrith, Wetherill Park, Silverwater, Hornsby and Botany and in most regional rentres across NSW.

There are also more than 100 cars fitted with technology which allows inspectors to intercept specifically targeted trucks.

Additional to that are 24 point to point camera sites that capture speeding trucks, 27 Safe-T-Cam cameras that identify fatigued truck drivers - all linked with all Safe-T-Cam sites in South Australia.

"We are the through state for more 60 per cent of the nation’s freight task travelling from interstate.

"It’s estimated up to 420,000 trucks travel through NSW each day and it’s no surprise about 60 per cent of those are from interstate.

"The tanker involved in the tragic double fatality in Mona Vale last October did not come under the NSW regime.

"The tragedy led NSW to successfully convince the national transport and infrastructure committee known as SCOTI to undertake work to improve the maintenance regime for heavy vehicles.

"I was pleased to take the reforms to SCOTI on behalf of NSW and secure agreement for: a review of the National Heavy Vehicle Accreditation Scheme to be led by the National

Heavy Vehicle Regulator; to bring forward the National Transport Commission’s scheduled review of heavy vehicle inspection regimes; and to expedite consideration of the introduction of mandatory requirements for electronic stability control on all new heavy vehicle trailers carrying dangerous goods.

"Our record in government in NSW speaks for itself. The State spends more than $70 million on truck enforcement each year - more than half of the $130 million figure spent nationally.

"Some other states have no more than 40 heavy vehicle inspectors compared to our 280 in NSW and most states have no Point to Point or Safe-T-Cam cameras at all.

"Last year we also gave our heavy vehicle inspectors the powers to deregister trucks for up to 3 months if they have not carried out mechanical repairs ordered by our inspectors.

"It’s an immediate way of protecting motorists by taking trucks off the road if rogue companies can’t be trusted to clear the defects.

"Where we see a pattern emerging with rogue operators failing to carry out repairs we can apply heavy fines and escalate the process into the courts.

"We can and do prosecute companies in the freight supply chain that are responsible for preventing breaches of road transport laws. This is called the Chain of Responsibility.

"All parties in the supply chain – consignor/dispatcher, packer, loader, scheduler, consignee/receiver, manager, directors as well as the driver and operator – must take positive steps to prevent a breach of road transport mass, dimension, loading, speeding and laws covering working hours.

"Roads and Maritime has successfully prosecuted and recovered costs from companies involved in incidents on the road network. For example - when an overpass was damaged in Maitland several years ago – the companies involved were directed by the Supreme Court to pay $1.4 million for the damage.

"NSW is working to change behaviour across the heavy vehicle industry by leading the way with our comprehensive inspection and enforcement regime," Minister Gay said.

Media: Marie Scoutas 0467 739 976 or Lance Northey 0467 743 192

View the original media release (PDF).

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