The long anticipated changes to the Chain of Responsibility (CoR) aspects of the Heavy Vehicle National Law (HVNL) became reality from 1 October 2018. The changes affect all businesses operating in supply chains using heavy vehicles. 

Key changes are the introduction of: 

  • primary duty to ensure the safety of heavy vehicle-related transport activities
  • independent due diligence obligations imposed on the executive of companies in the Chain of Responsibility
  • substantially increased penalties, including custodial penalties. 

The changes have been complemented by a detailed Master Code of Conduct (prepared with assistance of the Australian Logistics Council) providing important guidance around COR compliance.

Things to watch in transport in 2019

If there is a change of government in Canberra, expect to see a return of Safe Rates/Road Safety Remuneration Tribunal (RSRT). The RSRT in its previous iteration was highly controversial in its attempt to link heavy vehicle freight rates to road safety outcomes. 

This publication does not deal with every important topic or change in law and is not intended to be relied upon as a substitute for legal or other advice that may be relevant to the reader's specific circumstances. If you have found this publication of interest and would like to know more or wish to obtain legal advice relevant to your circumstances please contact one of the named individuals listed.