Check your load to help protect our roads

There’s no denying there has been an influx of overheight trucks attempting to enter tunnels in the Sydney region recently. 

The NHVR has been working closely with Transport for NSW and NSW Police to assist with these incidents.

New South Wales has more bridges and tunnels with low clearances of 4.6m or less than any other state in Australia. 

Overheight trucks entering tunnels have a serious impact on the safety of road users and can cause serious delays and congestion for commuters.

On Thursday, June 8, 2023, the NHVR and NSW Government made a joint announcement that the NHVR will refer all over height breaches to Transport for NSW moving forward. This is because even the smallest breach is repeatedly threatening safety on Sydney roads.

Under the existing road transport regulation, Transport for NSW can suspend the trucks registration and take them off the road once an incident has been referred by the NHVR.

At the NHVR, we believe that prevention is the best approach, especially when dealing with tunnel height clearances. 

It’s important to have any restrictions assessed prior to commencing a journey to ensure you have suitable control measures in place. This is so you can be prepared in the event your trip is altered. 

Knowing the maximum legal height for heavy vehicles is important, but so is knowing the height limit of the road you intend to travel on. 

Even if your heavy vehicle is compliant in height, it does not mean it’s able to travel on all roads. It’s imperative to plan a journey ahead of time and check the limitations of the roads you intend to travel on. Drivers and operators should also ensure they obey all road rules and be aware of any critical locations before starting their journey and throughout. 

We want to urge both drivers and operators to measure the height of their trucks and plan their journeys ahead of time to ensure they comply with tunnel height clearances. 

The NHVR provides practical advice to help heavy vehicle drivers and operators comply with the Heavy Vehicle National Law (HVNL). If you’d like to learn more about some of the methods we use to assess compliance with heavy vehicle dimension requirements, click here. 

For a general overview of mass, dimension and loading requirements, you can view the NHVR road access page here. 

Recently, the NHVR partnered with government agencies and launched a video to raise awareness on over height trucks in tunnels. 

The video showcases how our safety and compliance officers work alongside other agencies like Transport for NSW and NSW Police during an over height incident. You can view the video at nhvr.gov.au/overheight.

We work collaboratively with both agencies to deliver and increase safety, productivity and efficiency in the heavy vehicle industry, and we are here to keep the network moving and keep motorists safe. 

  • Brett Patterson is NHVR director operations, Central Region

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Send this to a friend