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NHVR delivers emergency notices over outback flooding events

The NHVR says its priority is on ensuring safe heavy vehicle movements in the region as truck traffic is set to increase in the flood-stricken region

The National Heavy Vehicle Regulator (NHVR), working with Main Roads Western Australia and the Department for Infrastructure and Transport South Australia, has published two emergency notices after recent flooding closed a key rail network.

NHVR chief operations officer Paul Salvati says the notices allow increased access for road trains up to 53.5m through the region, which lies between SA’s Port Augusta and the WA border, as well as internally into WA.

“Over the past week, we have seen massive amounts of rain fall on the WA outback, inundating roads and damaging key networks, and our thoughts are with anyone who has been affected,” Salvati says.

“The flooding in the Eyre Highway area has caused damage to the rail network, forcing it closed.

“In light of this, the NHVR has partnered with WA and SA state transport authorities to deliver this urgent emergency notice.”

Salvati says the notice is set to allow heavy vehicle drivers and operators to have increased flexibility and improved access to the critical routes to provide essential supplies and emergency provisions for communities who have been isolated by the flooding.

He says truckies have previously had to take “huge detours” to reach their destination due to the flooding, with the national regulator recognising the importance of delivering essential items to impacted communities.

“However, we are also urging drivers to exercise caution when travelling through these conditions, prioritising safety above all else,” Salvati says.

“Due to the heightened risk and uncertainty, the NHVR will be proactively patrolling the region to ensure all heavy vehicle drivers are travelling safely.”

Salvati says the NHVR is anticipating more trucks to be on the road during this time. With road conditions potentially being unpredictable, the NHVR is focusing on ensuring there are safe and efficient heavy vehicle movements in the area.

“The last thing we want to see is overloaded or unsafe truck operations, with compliance paramount during this time,” Salvati says.

“For any driver navigating these challenging conditions, be prepared by taking any necessary precautions, equip yourself and your vehicle appropriately and always prioritise safe driving practices to ensure a safe and secure journey.

“Operators should carefully brief any drivers who are new to the route, including on the location of rest areas and fuel stops.”

The NHVR is also reminding drivers to make sure they’re up to date with the emergency notices details before travelling.

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