HVIA Celebrates Final Version Of New Tipper Design Code

On July 1, the National Heavy Vehicle Regulator released the final version of its ‘J4’ tipper body design code, marking the conclusion of a lengthy period of industry consultation – and a major win for HVIA members.

HVIA’s Chief Technical Officer Adam Ritzinger, who has represented member interests in this crucial area since landing in the role in December 2022, says the removal of the proposed stability calculator has potentially saved the industry millions of dollars in additional costs.

The final version of the code removed the stability section in its entirety, with a view that it be re-introduced in some form in a future version of VSB6, following the eventual development of a public, online stability calculator as part of an NHVR-funded program.

Another key change was that the new J4 code only applies to ‘traditional’ tipping body vehicles and will not immediately apply to other types of vehicles that feature tipping bodies (i.e. tankers, street sweepers, waste collection vehicles and specialised construction vehicles).

“One of the ever-present risks to industry is ill-fitting regulations that add cost and ultimately fail to deliver on objectives,” Ritzinger says.

“Being at the forefront of industry and advocating for member interests to prevent those outcomes is one of the primary reasons I took on this role with HVIA.

“At times, it appeared as though the J4 code was going down the wrong path. Early drafts included a complex stability calculator that was difficult to comply with and was set to add thousands of dollars in engineering assessment and compliance fees.”

Ritzinger points to BITRE data that indicates roughly 10,000 new heavy rigid trucks were added to the Australian fleet in 2023.

“If one in 10 of those was fitted with a tipping body, which is a conservative estimate, the industry would have faced around $2.5 million in additional costs, just to get those vehicles on the road,” he contends.

“By leveraging the technical expertise of our members, and our existing relationships with Australia’s National Heavy Vehicle Regulator, we prevented that outcome.”

The final version of the J4 code is now available online here.

It supplements the revised implementation timeframe, which was released one week earlier on July 26.

HVIA thanks the valuable input from the dozens of members who contributed time and expertise to review J4 drafts and guide the implementation timeframes over the past 18 months.

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