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What the new Road Vehicle laws (RVSA) mean for Trailer Manufacturers and Suppliers

This month, the Australian government introduced a new set of laws called the Road Vehicle Standards Act (RVS or RVSA). While you may not see any immediate changes, the new piece of legislation is a big deal for those of us in the Australian Heavy Vehicle industry. As of July 1st, 2021 we are in the midst of a 12-month transition period to new legal requirements for all road vehicles and vehicle components: including truck and trailer manufacturers and suppliers.

The Drake Group are focused on safety as our highest priority. As these law changes will affect all of us in truck and trailer sales and manufacturing, we sat down and pulled together the following overview to help make sense of key changes.

Drake Blog New Road Vehicle laws

Why was the RVSA Introduced?

In a nutshell, the RVSA is designed to make sure all vehicles in Australia and their components meet higher safety, environmental and anti-theft standards. They replace the Motor Vehicles Standards Act (MVSA), which were put in place quite a while back in 1989.

Who and what does the RVS affect?

The new laws affect all road vehicles and their components, including:

  • Trucks
  • Trailers
  • Cars
  • Caravans
  • And any vehicle components (anything involved in vehicle assembly)

The rules apply regardless of whether a vehicle/component is:

  • New
  • Used
  • Imported, or
  • Locally manufactured

What steps should Truck and Trailer Manufacturers and Suppliers be taking now?

Everyone in the motor vehicle sales and production industry have until 1 July 2022 to get to know the new requirements and ensure compliance. It’s best to get a head-start now.

1. The first step is to understand the new RVSA laws. It’s a bit of a read – but well worth your time.
In their comprehensive online summary, The Heavy Vehicles Industry Australia (HVIA) have handily identified some of RVSA key changes, including:

  • The introduction of a Register of Approved Vehicles (RAV) – this a public online database of all vehicles that have been given the tick of approval for meeting the new requirements. It gets rid of the need for physical compliance plates. Any new vehicle or component will need to registered on here before it can go to market in Australia.
  • The Road Vehicle Compliance System (RVCS) has now changed to the ROad VEhicle Regulator (ROVER) – This is the new online portal where trailer manufacturers and suppliers apply for approval or look up registered vehicles and components.
  • Identity Plate Approvals (IPA) have now been updated to Vehicle Type Approvals (VTA)
  • The Sub Assembly Registration Numbers (SARN) and Component Registration Numbers (CRN) have been combined into Component Type Approvals (CTA)

2. Next, you can sign up for ROVER online. ROVER is where you access the RAV and apply to get your vehicles and/or components registered. For buyers – the RAV is where you can search vehicles and components to check compliance.

3. Once you’ve wrapped your head around the changes and signed up for ROVER, so begins the process of ‘opting in”, making sure any vehicles or components are up to scratch, and registering them by July 2022. This is where a lot of the legwork lies.

It’s best to get started on these steps ASAP.

All the resources you need:

Access all the RVSA resources on The Department of Infrastructure, Transport, Regional Development and Communications (DITRDC)’s website.

The Drake Group are leading trailer manufacturers with over 100 years of combined experience in custom trailer design and manufacturing of high quality trailers. We prize safety above all else and are known for our reliability and constant innovation to ensure the highest quality product. Contact our team today to talk through the wide range of The Drake Group products.