The National Heavy Vehicle Regulator (NHVR) has publicised a big advance in its Performance Based Standards (PBS ) unveiling the first approved B-Triple rig at an event at Portland in Victoria last week.

The new B-Triple will be operated by Direct Freight on an Adelaide Perth run at Level 3 access operating at an approved GCM of 83 tonnes at 42 metres in length for the full triple combination and is also fully modular, enabling operators to break dwon the set and run at Level 2 B-Double spec at around 30 metres and 63 tonnes GCM on the East Coast.

NHVR chief engineer, Les Bruzsa, said the rig is both extremely productive and versatile.

“This is a modular design and like the B-quad it can be run as a B-triple or B-double,” said Les Bruzsa.

Unlike earlier B-triples, Direct Freight’s new B-Triple features trailers which are at the same length of 14.3 metres and each tri-axle group has a maximum 20 tonnes load capacity.

The Direct Freight B-Triple uses curtain-sided double drop deck Southern Cross Trailers with a total length of  close to 42 metres, and a height of 4.6-metres, and has been configured to ensure maximum freight volume for express post and time sensitive parcel freight.

The Southern Cross trailers have been set up with mezzanine decks which enabling transport of up to 120 pallets in in B-Triple  spec or 84 pallets in B-double trim.

The NHVR is trumpeting the fact that the roll-coupled B-triple configuration offers maximimum payload space while delivering superior stability and tracking  as well as minimum turbulence and wind resistance between trailers.

The rig has four self-steer axles with two on the rear positions of the lead trailer and one each on the rear of the middle and back trailers.

Electronic sensors are fitted to the two steer axles on the lead trailer to harmonise the wheel cut angles to ensure minimimum tyre scrub and sidewall deflection when turning at slow speeds. Speed activated locking of the steer axles is activated at 40km/h locking the wheels in the straight-ahead position to improve dynamic stability at higher speeds.

Road-friendly certified airbag suspension is fitted on each of the trailers along with full electronic braking system (EBS) disc brakes using anti-lock (ABS) and stability program (ESP) to reduce the risk of rollover in the event of a sudden manoeuvre and the rig is continuously monitored under the Intelligent Access Program (IAP) to ensure compliance with routes.