Main Roads changes alleviate weight worry

24 Sep, 2015 02:00 AM
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FEARS of increased wait times at CBH bins under new road transport laws controlling weight management have been allayed following discussions between the co-operative and Main Roads WA.

The new Chain of Responsibility regulations and Accredited Mass Management Scheme (AMMS) introduced in late April had CBH concerned after reports some fertiliser companies had outloading times impacted earlier this year.

While separate transport regulations, the two dovetail as AMMS requires trucks to be weighed per axle group rather than vehicle to prevent overloaded vehicles on unsuitable roads and Chain of Responsibility holds each link in the supply chain responsible for compliance with transport laws.

It is understood the CBH weighbridges and associated software are unable to weigh vehicles per axle grouping as now required by AMMS.

However, CBH road transport specialist Luke Taplin said collaboration between CBH and Main Roads had allowed minor changes to the rules.

"Main Roads WA has subtly changed the requirements of the AMMS between the first release of the AMMS rules and the last update to AMMS requirements," he said.

"Through following current loading practices, while conducting structured repeatability trials (of mass distribution) and demonstrating that CBH's mass management is consistent, we will meet AMMS requirements.

"The scheme is now structured such that a loading plan must be capable of controlling the vehicle's gross mass and load distribution across axle groups within the permitted mass limits of AMMS.

"Where a weighbridge is identified by an operator as their sole loading control method, the weighbridge must be able to determine and record the gross mass of the vehicle and load distribution over the axle groups."

As a part of the regulations, a five per cent tolerance across axle groups can be applied for the purpose of load distribution, but Mr Taplin said the vehicle's gross mass could not be exceeded as part of the allowance.

A spokesperson for Main Roads said there had been meetings with several companies, including CBH, to explain their responsibilities under the Chain of Responsibility legislation and AMMS.

"AMMS has been developed to provide the transport industry with a flexible concessional loading scheme that does not prescribe the loading control methods," the spokesperson said.

"The scheme does not prescribe the specific loading control methods that must be used, rather the scheme allows any proven accurate and consistent loading control method to be used."

At CSBP this season, weighbridge software has been changed to record axle grouping weights and list these on delivery notes for loads leaving Kwinana.

CSBP Fertilisers general manager Charlie Perkins said this had slowed weighing processes, but efforts were being made to change procedures to allow for the new regulations.

This included investment in 'weigh-in-motion' weighbridge software.

As the Chain of Responsibility has required a group such as CSBP to take "reasonable steps" to manage risk, there is an onus on carriers to comply with AMMS.

The AMMS is replacing the Certified Weighbridge Mass Management Scheme (CWMMS) and Concessional Loading Bulk Products Scheme (CLPBS) over the next 12 months and carriers have time to transfer their permits.

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