Industry has welcomed the decision by the regulator to grant a further four months to allow all impacted parties a chance to comply with the new J4 tipper body design code.
To provide time for modifications which were already underway, and allow industry to adjust to the new standards in the Vehicle Standards Bulletin 6 (VSB6), an initial three-month period was provided for tipper bodies to be certified under the new requirements in Version 3.2.
Following further review and consultation, the National Heavy Vehicle Regulator (NHVR) will now extend the transitional arrangements for the application of the new design code to February 1, 2024.
NHVR CEO Sal Petroccitto said the extension follows discussions with Heavy Vehicle Industry Australia (HVIA) and Approved Vehicle Examiners (AVEs), with the NHVR considering it appropriate to extend the certification period a further four months.
“The extension to February 2024 will provide additional time for AVEs to become accredited by their jurisdiction’s accreditation scheme, familiarise themselves with the updated code, and allow tipper body manufacturers to make the necessary changes to their designs,” Petroccitto said.
“It will also allow the NHVR to work with industry to address any queries relating to the new code and VSB6 Version 3.2 in general.”
Heavy Vehicle Industry Australia chief executive officer Todd Hacking said he wanted to recognise the NHVR for its willingness to engage with HVIA, its members and other affected parties to recognise the issues that are at play.
“The intention of these Standards is to ensure that Australia’s heavy vehicle fleet is both safe and productive, and we support their ongoing improvement,” Hacking said.
“We will work closely with the NHVR team and other stakeholders towards ensuring there is adequate capacity and resourcing to allow the updates to succeed when the transition period finishes next February.”
Petroccitto said the NHVR understands that some vehicle modifications are complex changes and require extensive design and work to complete.
“We are asking owners and modifiers that require the extension to February 2024, to apply to the NHVR for the extension so that we can monitor how industry is progressing as well as target any future communications.”
HVIA has also re-instigated calls for the AVE scheme to be harmonised – a position, Hacking says, HVIA has held for many years.
“Some of these issues stem from a lack of national harmonisation of the Authorised Vehicle Examiner (AVE) scheme.
“In 2018, the NHVR publicly announced that a project to harmonise the AVE scheme was underway.
“HVIA is not aware of any further progress on that project, which is regrettable, as it may have prevented some of the current issues with VSB6 version 3.2 from arising.”
• To apply to for an extension of the implementation of the J4 tipper body design code, email vehiclestandards@ nhvr.gov.au with your request, including your name and business name and estimated number of tipper body certifications over this period.