National Heavy Vehicle Regulator releases plan for safer grain harvest

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Monday, 6 September, 2021 - 12:45
Policy & legislation
National News

The National Heavy Vehicle Regulator (NHVR) recently released a simple 9 Step Safety Management System (SMS) roadmap to assist businesses to develop and improve their heavy vehicle safety systems.

The regulator released the roadmap ahead of this year’s grain harvest and encouraged heavy vehicle safety management check-ups ahead of what is expected to be a bumper season.

Road Safety and Freight Transport Assistant Minister Scott Buchholz said the roadmap is particularly important at this time.

“The prospect of good yields in many grain-growing regions of Australia means more heavy vehicle traffic on country roads and that means safety becomes paramount,” Assistant Minister Buchholz said.

“Whether you own your own truck or you’re in the process of arranging a contractor, take some time to make sure you’ve thought about the risks and put steps in place to make your operation safe.

“Now is the time to make sure your truck is properly checked before use or have safe access for a contractor onto your property, know your mass limits and have the proper permits in place.”

The roadmap consists of the following nine steps:

1. Introduction to Safety Management System (SMS)

2. Risk assessment, treatment and monitoring

3. Hazard and incident reporting

4. Management commitment and documentation

5. Internal safety investigations

6. Safety training & communication

7. Safety performance monitoring

8. Third-party interactions

9. Continuous improvement and change management

NHVR CEO Sal Petroccitto said the roadmap focuses on targeted content to mitigate key safety risks.

“An SMS can be as simple as undertaking a daily visual inspection of your heavy vehicle, not putting pressure on drivers to exceed the speed limits or drive fatigued and loading within your mass limits,” he said.

“We want to ensure companies have the tools to put in place safety procedures and to engage in important safety conversations with staff and other parties in the chain.”