Roles and responsibilities

Every person in the transport supply chain has a responsibility to ensure the safe and legal transport of goods on NSW roads and within Australia.

If a breach of NSW or National road laws occurs due to your action, inaction or demands, you may be legally accountable and prosecuted.

Put simply this means: control = responsibility = legal liability.

Driver

What are my responsibilities?

As a heavy vehicle driver, your responsibilities include ensuring:

  • You do not exceed the speed limit
  • Your vehicle does not exceed mass limits
  • Your vehicle and load do not exceed dimension limits
  • You do not tamper with any equipment required to be fitted to the vehicle
  • Driving regulated work/rest hours are complied with
  • Records of your work and rest hours are made
  • You do not drive while impaired by fatigue
  • You carry and complete your work diary, if required.

What do I need to do?

As a heavy vehicle driver, you need to make sure your conduct does not compromise road safety or involve breaching NSW or National road laws.

You must know your vehicle's mass. You can do this by:

  • Keeping weighbridge dockets issued to the vehicle you are driving
  • Using on-board scales to check your weights
  • Keeping any loading documentation that shows the weight of your load
  • Knowing how much weight is allowed on the vehicle when fully loaded.

You must not exceed the regulated hours for work and rest. Remember that these are maximum hours. You must always rest when tired and have adequate sleep to prevent fatigue.

You must ensure your vehicle does not exceed dimension limits.

Your load must be checked to ensure it is properly restrained, even if you are not the person who loaded the vehicle. You must check the adequacy and condition of restraining equipment (chains, ropes, straps etc).

You must observe the speed limit at all times and ensure a vehicles speed limiter is compliant.

Loader/packer

What are my responsibilities as a loader/packer?

As a loader, your responsibilities include ensuring the:

  • Load does not cause the vehicle mass limits to be exceeded
  • Load is placed in a way that it does not become unstable, unsafe, move or fall off the vehicle.

As a packer, your responsibilities include ensuring:

  • Documentation about the vehicle’s load is not false or misleading
  • Goods packed in a freight container do not cause the container’s gross weight or safety approval rating to be exceeded.

What do I need to do?

As a loader/packer, you need to make sure your conduct does not compromise road safety or involve breaching NSW or National road laws.

You must know how to safely and legally load and pack a vehicle. You can do this by:

  • Having a loading diagram for different types of loads to ensure axle weight limits are not exceeded
  • Under-loading a vehicle if the vehicle’s weight cannot be accurately assessed at the time of loading and verifying the weight at some stage of the journey. Subsequent loads can be adjusted accordingly
  • Fitting scales to loading equipment and keeping a 'running' total of the weight of the load for each trip
  • Using a pre-printed form which requires the person in control of packing or loading the goods to verify the accuracy of any records.

An operator may develop a loading/packaging plan that provides for the safe loading and packing of goods.

Operator, manager and/or scheduler

What are my responsibilities?

As an operator, manager, or scheduler of a road transport business, your responsibilities include ensuring that:

  • Rosters and schedules do not require drivers to exceed work/rest or speed limits
  • Speed limiters are compliant
  • Vehicles do not exceed mass or dimension limits
  • Appropriate restraint equipment is provided and loads are appropriately restrained
  • You keep records of your drivers’ activities, including work/rest times
  • You take reasonable steps to ensure the driver does not work while impaired by fatigue.

What do I need to do?

As an operator, manager or scheduler, you need to make sure your conduct does not compromise road safety or involve breaching NSW or National road laws.

You must implement policies, procedures and systems to ensure that the mass of each vehicle is assessed and recorded for each trip.

You must have an auditable system for rostering and scheduling drivers so that they do not exceed work/rest hours or exceed speed limits.

A driver must be given sufficient opportunity for rest and sleep to avoid fatigue or to avoid speeding to meet deadlines.

You must ensure vehicles and work equipment are kept in good condition.

All heavy vehicles must be speed limiter compliant and operating fully.

You must keep records of drivers’ activities, including work diaries.

Compliance assurance conditions must be included in relevant commercial arrangements with other responsible persons.

Employees must have access to necessary work information, instruction, training and supervision to enable them to carry out their work safely and legally.

Consigner/receiver

What are my responsibilities as a consignor/receiver?

As a consignor/receiver, your responsibilities include ensuring that a heavy vehicle driver does not:

  • Exceed permitted work/rest hours
  • Fail to have minimum rest periods
  • Exceed the speed limit
  • Carry goods that exceed vehicle dimension limits
  • Carry goods that cause vehicle mass limits to be exceeded
  • Inappropriately carry any goods that are not appropriately secured
  • Drive while impaired by fatigue.

What do I need to do?

As a consignor/receiver, you need to make sure your conduct does not compromise road safety or involve breaching NSW or National road laws.

You must implement compliance assurance conditions in relevant commercial arrangements with other responsible persons.

You must request information from other responsible persons about what systems and controls are in place to ensure compliance.

You must ensure there are no award arrangements which encourage or reward non-compliance.

You must implement active risk management systems.

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