The Australian Road Transport Suppliers’ Association (ARTSA) will continue staging forums on the VSB6 modification code, given the industry’s turnout to the recent Heavy Vehicle Modification and Innovation Conference 2017 in Melbourne.
According to ARTSA, the two-day event hosted in partnership with the Commercial Vehicle Industry Association Victoria (CVIA) and the Commercial Vehicle Industry Association Australia (CVIAA) drew more than 150 attendees.
With the VSB6 modification code currently undergoing its first major review in 20 years, ARTSA said keeping Australia’s transport market abreast of the changes was critical.
“Education remains the key,” commented ARTSA Chairman, Dr Peter Hart. “Whilst the VSB6 code is well on the way to a new an improved version, much helped by 130 Accredited Vehicle Examiners (AVE) and suppliers at the Conference, this is somewhat academic if the industry does not pay attention.
“It is clear that modifications in many cases do not have the VSB6 ruler run over them. It is still a document for the well informed and not for industry in general and that is the challenge – how to make it the guide for all and not just a group of professional modifiers.
“ARTSA and the CVIA and CVIAA are assisting by producing an informative wall chart and short pamphlets on “what is an AVE?” and “what is VSB6” amongst others.”
The Conference also addressed AVE best practices, with discussions centred on the current New South Wales system for online assessments and what it offers. “The system prevents customers ‘AVE shopping’ until then find someone who will sign off their modification,” Dr Hart said.
“It’s about consistent rules and it seems NSW has gone a long way to achieving a major improvement in that process. The delegates recommended that the National Heavy Vehicle Regulator (NHVR) study this system closely as part of the upcoming AVE review.”
According to ARTSA, a report on the event will be passed to the NHVR with suggestions on how to improve the many sections of the Code. It has also encouraged individual companies to provide feedback via the NHVR website.
“Interested parties will have until 17 March to have their say,” Hart added. “ARTSA will share its report ahead of the March 17 deadline with all participants, which will appear in an upcoming Trailer article.”