PBS applications simpler, faster vows NHVR

The National Heavy Vehicle Regulator (NHVR) will be introducing changes to the Performance-Based Standards (PBS) scheme Vehicle Approval (VA) document.

In a move to reduce administrative burden for industry and provide a better customer experience, NHVR CEO Sal Petroccitto said the changes would remove some of the unnecessary complexity in getting a PBS vehicle approved.

“The PBS scheme allows heavy vehicle operators to use innovative and optimised vehicle designs – allowing freight to be moved in a safe way with fewer truck movements,” said Petroccitto.

“As the sector continues to address the challenges associated with COVID, including driver shortages and the growing freight task, it is critical we improve accessibility to these safer and more productive heavy vehicles,” he said.

The aim for the NHVR is to permit safer, smarter and more productive vehicles access to the road network sooner.

“The new changes will simplify and accelerate the approval of PBS combinations by removing the transfer of PBS vehicle applications when a vehicle is sold and removing duplication, which will reduce the size of a vehicle application by 30 per cent,” said Petroccitto.

“These changes are just the latest improvements in a suite of initiatives we will be delivering over the next year to reform and modernise the PBS scheme.”

The changes to PBS VAs will be introduced from 14 November 2022, following industry stakeholder consultation earlier this year.

The first change includes removing the operator’s name from the PBS VA.

This means that the VA will become an authorisation to the vehicles listed on the VA, regardless of who owns or operates them, eliminating the need for a VA transfer when vehicles are sold.

Also, subcontractors will be able to use the VA without having to transfer it into their name.

All existing VAs will be unaffected, although operators with an existing VA will be able to request the NHVR to remove their name from their VA document should they wish.

Access permits will also be unaffected by these changes according to the NHVR statement.

In the second change, the NHVR will be replacing the specification tables with a simpler table.

Specification tables contain key vehicle parameters, including dimensions, components and Vehicle Identification Numbers (VINs).

The new table will only contain key vehicle information, such as VINs, vehicle make and model. This will eliminate duplicated information and reduce the workload for PBS certifiers.

Heavy Vehicle Industry Australia CEO Todd Hacking has welcomed the changes.

“HVIA welcomes this red-tape reduction initiative of the NHVR, and, on behalf of our members, we look forward to simpler, quicker PBS assessments as a result,” he said.

“The more efficient the PBS administrative process is, the quicker the vehicle can be on-road improving the productivity and safety performance for the operator, which is the primary objective of the industry,” said Hacking.

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