SA to push on with truck inspection program

Next step to see biannual checks at four years old, then annual checks after 10

SA to push on with truck inspection program
Stephen Mulligan wants to reduce crashes caused by unsafe heavy vehicles


South Australia is looking to take the next step with its Heavy Vehicle Inspection Scheme (HVIS).

Seeking to "weed out unroadworthy trucks", the scheme will be expanded, with the state government calling for business proposals to run stage two of the scheme.

"The Heavy Vehicle Inspection Scheme is aimed at improving the safety of South Australian roads by reducing the number of crashes caused by unsafe heavy vehicles," state transport minister Stephen Mulligan says.

A pilot scheme was introduced in January requiring vehicles more than three years old, and registered in South Australia, to undergo an inspection at change of ownership.

That government says that 900 vehicles were inspected in the first half of 2017 with 58 per cent of vehicles found to be non-compliant.

Of those, 29 per cent were faults with lights and reflectors, while, one fifth of faults related to brakes.

In stage two, all heavy vehicles will require an inspection at four, six and eight years after manufacture, then every year from 10 years of age.

However, the Transport Workers Union (TWU) warns the scheme will fail unless the financial pressure on transport operators is addressed.
Retailers and manufacturers are constantly reducing their transport contracts, forcing operators to cut back on truck maintenance, the union argues.
"Operators are having to choose between getting brakes fixed, getting new tyres and keeping their businesses going. Bringing in more checks on their vehicles will not solve the problem of dodgy trucks on our roads," TWU SA/NT branch secretary Ian Smith says.

"The inherent crisis with the supply chain needs to be looked at and these wealthy clients must be held to account."  

The government says it has been working with the SA Road Transport Association (SARTA), the Livestock and Rural Transporters Association of SA (LRTASA) and the Motor Trades Association to develop the inspection regime.

Inspections stations will be located in both metropolitan and regional areas across the state.

The government is also working with the National Heavy Vehicle Regulator to ensure the South Australian scheme aligns with proposed national reforms.

The scheme is expected to create up to 100 full-time jobs.

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