On April 27 2015, Western Australia introduced Chain of Responsibility to its road transport laws, more than 10 years after the eastern states began enforcing their own CoR regulations.
But while this spells trouble for any operator who falls foul of the new transport laws, the state regulator for heavy vehicles, Paul Bond, says his organisation’s focus is on education over enforcement.
“There was a strong perception out there that we were going to enforce rather than educate. In fact, we have spent an inordinate amount of time reassuring everyone that education is a key component.”
However, he was keen to point out that offenders would be prosecuted.
“We will target people in the chain who systematically and persistently commit mass, dimension and load breaches.”
WA’s new laws bring it closer to other states, but with some exceptions. Unlike other jurisdictions, in WA there is no gross vehicle mass limit, meaning load restraints relate to both light and heavy vehicles. There is also no provision for speed and fatigue offences.
“In the beginning, speed and fatigue were considered, however it was clear from the beginning that WA would only need to implement mass, dimension and load restraint duties in its CoR legislation.
This is because fatigue management is presently covered by WorkSafe WA, the state’s workplace health and safety regulator, while speed is covered by WA Police.”
Paul Bond says he will continue to work with the eastern states to improve road safety outcomes.
“We are fortunate to have a strong and healthy working relationship with our eastern states counterparts where we share experiences, trends and issues.
Although WA is not part of the National Heavy Vehicle Regulator, we are always involved in discussions on heavy vehicle safety issues and included in meetings, workshops and forums to identify and address national and local heavy vehicle safety trends.”
Subscribers to CoR Adviser can read the full interview with Paul Bond in the July issue. Click here to sign up for a free 30-day trial of CoR Adviser.
Until next time,
The CoR Adviser Team