A consignor of timber goods has pleaded guilty to one category two offence under the Heavy Vehicle National Law (HVNL), and was convicted and fined $75,000 at Melbourne Magistrates’ Court.
The National Heavy Vehicle Regulator (NHVR) first charged the Victorian-based timber transporter with a safety offence after a truck rolled over onto a pedestrian island crossing in 2019.
The heavy vehicle was loaded with a 40-foot shipping container carrying 26 tonnes of imported timber plywood products when it rolled.
According to the NHVR, the consignor had breached its safety duty by “exposing drivers and members of the public to the risk of death or serious injury” by failing to comply with section 26G of the HVNL.
The NHVR’s investigation also revealed that the consignor had failed to comply with its own CoR policy, provide overseas suppliers with instructions regarding compliance with Australian safety regulations, require records and photographs of the container’s load and restraint to be provided prior to shipping, and advise the driver and operator of the vehicle on how the load was restrained.
NHVR Executive Director Statutory Compliance, Ray Hassall, said all parties in the chain should take note of this court outcome.
“This is a significant decision that should be heeded by all duty holders under the HVNL, but particularly those involved in the consignment of imported goods,” he said.
“These obligations are in place to ensure all parties in the CoR manage the safety of their transport activities and can’t simply delegate responsibility to drivers and transport operators.”
The NHVR has resources available to assist with heavy vehicle loading requirements and risk minimisation.