Load consigner charged over truck rollover

The National Heavy Vehicle Regulator (NHVR) has charged a Victorian company with serious safety offences after a truck rolled onto a pedestrian island crossing.

The truck was loaded with a shipping container carrying 26 tonnes of imported timber plywood products when it rolled in Dandenong on November 11, 2019.

The load’s consignor has been charged with exposing drivers, unloaders and members of the public to the risk of death or serious injury by failing to comply with sections 26G and 26H of the Heavy Vehicle National Law.

The case is the first prosecution of a consignor by the NHVR following the 2018 amendment of the Heavy Vehicle National Law which made all parties in the supply chain part of the Chain of Responsibility, with a shared duty to ensure the safety of transport activities.

NHVR Executive Director Statutory Compliance Ray Hassall said the law was now clear that everyone involved in heavy vehicle transport had a shared responsibility to ensure the safety of workers and the public.

“This was a serious incident that the NHVR will allege was caused by multiple breaches of safety laws,” Hassall said.

The NHVR will allege the consignor failed to comply with loading and restraint requirements, failed to advise an overseas supplier of Australian safety regulations, failed to have any restraint system in place in the container, and failed to advise the driver and operator how the load was packed.

It will be further allege that the consignor had failed to take these measures since June 2017, during which time 189 containers were transported without any restraint.

Luckily, no one was injured in the November 2019 rollover.

The matter is due to appear before the Melbourne Magistrates’ Court on March 22, 2021.

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