The future HVNL should place responsibilities for managing risks with those most able to do so and cater to an evolving supply chain. The law should encourage all influential parties to take a proactive approach to managing safety, including drivers.

Summary of issues and options

CoR parties


Under the HVNL the primary duty only applies to a defined list of parties in the Chain of Responsibility (CoR). Some stakeholders have told us that this list doesn’t reflect the current heavy vehicle supply chain, meaning that some parties who impact heavy vehicle safety aren't held to account under the law.


4.1 Expand the application of the primary duty to parties who influence the safety of transport activities. Read in the RIS and HVNL 2.0.

  • This could mean heavy vehicle repairers, manufacturers, and many others would have a primary safety duty under the HVNL.

4.1b Add specified parties to the defined list of CoR parties. Read in the RIS and HVNL 2.0.

Driver duties


Some stakeholders express the view that drivers have poorly defined responsibilities under the HVNL, even though they have the most direct impact on heavy vehicle road safety.


4.2 Establish a separate driver safety duty (replicating worker duty under WHS law). Read in the RIS and HVNL 2.0.

4.3 Apply the primary duty (26C) to drivers. Read in the RIS.

Primary duty requirements


Some stakeholders are also concerned that the primary duty is vague and unclear on what it requires parties to do- particularly in relation to driver competency and fitness for work.


4.4 Amend the primary duty to clarify requirements for driver competency and driver fitness for work. Read in the RIS and HVNL 2.0.

  • The primary duty might clearly include ensuring, so far as is reasonably practicable, the competency and fitness for work of drivers. This could even cover drug and alcohol management plans.