Heavy Vehicle Industry Australia (HVIA) has welcomed proposed changes to be introduced under the Transport for NSW Freight Policy Reform Program.

TfNSW is the state government body responsible for strategy, planning, policy, regulation and funding allocation for all modes of transport in NSW, including the movement of freight by heavy vehicles.

A draft of the refreshed Heavy Vehicle Access Policy is available for public comment until Friday,31 May, 2024.

The HVIA says that while this draft, at more than 50 pages, is a lengthy and complex read, at face value, it appears to represent a significant shift in attitude by the NSW Government to recognizing it has a positive role to play in enhancing the productivity of the road transport system.

The draft policy is based on five policy ‘pillars’:

  • Road network infrastructure
  • Heavy vehicle configurations
  • Access
  • Telematics and data
  • Partnerships

Underpinning the policy is the recognition that the two key elements in improving productivity, safety, and sustainability are to expand access to the road network for high-productivity vehicles and to increase the number of new, safe, and efficient high-productivity vehicles using the network.

Overall, HVIA believes this is a refreshingly comprehensive strategy from the NSW Government and is keen to see other regulators adopt similar principles.

However, the association tells us that while the core principles are sound, some of the details need to be developed further if this approach is to be extended to a national strategy.

A statement from HVIA says that…

“this draft policy demonstrates the NSW government has tried to take a leadership role in access policy and it should be commended for that effort.

“However, to be truly effective this policy needs to be scaled up to a national approach and needs to be endorsed by governments at all levels.”

You can read the draft policy here.