Australia, Transport News

NHVR seeks reform feedback to increase Australia heavy vehicle width

The NHVR has launched a campaign to increase the nation’s heavy vehicle width and it needs the industry’s help

The National Heavy Vehicle Regulator (NHVR) has released a Discussion Paper on how to implement the federal government’s Safer Freight Vehicle (SFV) reform proposals, including increasing the width of heavy vehicles fitted with modern safety technologies.

NHVR Chief Regulatory Policy and Standards Officer David Hourigan says the reforms would support the uptake of safer heavy vehicles by increasing the overall width up to 2.55m or 2.60m.

“The proposed SFV reforms would increase the fitment of safety technologies to new heavy vehicles by aligning local width regulations with those in major markets such as Europe,” Hourigan says.

“These reforms will give industry access to a greater range of heavy vehicles fitted with the latest safety technologies.

“We want to hear from industry and further unpack how to implement these Australian Design Rule (ADR) changes into the Heavy Vehicle National Law (HVNL).”

According to the proposed SFV reforms, any vehicles exceeding 2.50m in width would need to be fitted with a mandatory technology package. This technology package includes features such as:

  • Advanced Emergency Braking (AEB)
  • Improved rear vision mirrors and systems
  • Lane Departure Warning
  • Side underrun protection (SUP); and
  • Improved conspicuity markings.

Once finalised in Europe, blind spot information systems and advanced systems that detect pedestrians and cyclists on the passenger side of heavy vehicles will also be required as part of the mandatory technology package.

Hourigan says while the federal government is still finalising the finer details of these reforms, the NHVR is proactively considering how these changes might change the HVNL.

“The heavy vehicle industry and truck manufacturers are ready for this next generation of safer trucks. The NHVR wants to make sure the HVNL is prepared to get these safer trucks on our roads,” Hourigan says.

To read the Discussion Paper and find out how to submit your feedback, visit www.nhvr.gov.au/consultation/2023/06/30/implementation-of-safer-freight-vehicle-reforms

The closing date for written submissions is Friday June 30, 2023.

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