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National Compliance and Enforcement

On 10 February 2014 the Heavy Vehicle National Law 2012 (HVNL) commenced, replacing existing laws governing the operation of all vehicles over 4.5 tonnes gross vehicle mass in Queensland, New South Wales, Victoria, South Australia, the Australian Capital Territory and Tasmania.

The National Heavy Vehicle Regulator (NHVR) was established to administer the HVNL and is now the first point of contact for the majority of your heavy vehicle business.

About the chain of responsibility

Everyone in the supply chain – not just the driver or operator – shares the responsibility for ensuring breaches of road laws do not occur. In addition, corporate entities, directors, partners and managers are accountable for the actions of people under their control. This is the ’chain of responsibility’.

If you exercise (or have the capability of exercising) control or influence over any transport task, you are responsible for ensuring road transport laws are complied with.

Chain of responsibility is similar to the legal concept of ‘duty of care’ that underpins occupational health and safety law. Penalties and sanctions under road transport laws will range from formal warnings to court-imposed fines and penalties. Businesses trying to gain an unfair commercial advantage over competitors by compromising road safety standards can be held liable.

Legal liability applies to all parties for their actions or inactions. For specific queries about how chain of responsibility legislation applies to you, consult a solicitor or the Legal Aid organisation in your state or territory.

For more information visit the NHVR's compliance, enforcement and chain of responsibility website.

Last updated
24 August 2017