The Road Vehicle Standards Act is coming

HVIA National Manager Policy and Government Relations Greg Forbes says that the new Road Vehicle Standards Act legislation is in its final stages in Parliament and is expected to take  effect from late 2019 and be fully in place by late 2020.

In particular, truck manufacturers, trailer manufacturers and component suppliers need to understand the implications for their businesses and start preparing for the Road Vehicle Standards Act.

Consultation group meetings with the Department of Infrastructure Regional Development and Cities have starting clarify the impacts on industry.

There is some good new coming out of the consultation process for truck and trailer manufacturers but some bad news for CRN and SARN holders.

If you want to keep up to date on developments in this important legislation please contact Greg Forbes on 0437923755 or

Report on Road Vehicle Standards Act Consultation Group Meetings

The RVSA is currently in the senate and is at the second reading stage. This means that the Bill is likely to be passed shortly and means that the implementation of the Road Vehicle Standards Act will commence in late November or possibly December 2019.

We are still waiting on the official minutes of the consultation forums last week (we will circulate them to working group members when they become available) but here is a quick run down on the key issues to come out of the meetings. The department is keeping open the opportunity for last minute comments on the discussion papers but you need to be quick. If you have any comments you want passed on contact Greg Forbes at 0437923755

First the good news:

The process for converting existing MVSA approvals across to the RVSA (Opting in) will be simple and semi automatic. Provided the holder of the existing approval fills out the form, makes the declaration and pays the fee the approval for the conversion to a type approval is automatic – the Department does not need to make an assessment of the application.

If an approval holder wants to make a variation to an approval that has been transferred across to the MVSA they will only need to provide evidence of compliance to the extent of the modifications to the existing approval.

When opting in there is likely to be an ability for the approval holder to nominate an effective date for the opting in to allow time for coordinating process around loading vehicles on the Register of Approved Vehicles and the clearance of vehicles that have been constructed/imported according to MVSA rules. How this will work in practice is yet to be determined. One stipulation, however, will be that the nominated date will need to be within the opt in period (likely to be September to end of November 2019.

Then the bad news.

There will not be an automated process for converting CRNs and SARNs to component type approvals. This means that all holders of CRNs and SARN will need to make application for a Component Type Approval (CTA) if the component is to be used in a type approval approved wholly under the RVSA.

There will not be a phase in period for CRNs and SARNs.

There will be some provision for components to continue to be provided under a CRN where the component is provided as part of a vehicle type approval that has opted in to the RVSA. But this will only apply for a limited time. It is therefore important that all holders on CRNs or SARNS plan to apply for a CTA.

The Department has indicated that it plans to open up applications for CTA’s early and has discussed the possibility of commencing this process approximately three month before the opt in period for whole vehicles but this is still to be determined.

Testing Facilities will also need to apply for approval under the Road Vehicle Standards Act.

What may complicate this process is that the legislation places restrictions on accepting evidence from testing facilities collected prior to the commencement of the RVSA.  HVIA and the other industry representatives at the consultation meetings made the point that there are potentially significant impacts from these changes.

There is an ability to accept evidence on compliance with UN or other relevant standards and the Department has indicated that there may be some flexibility to accept some evidence collected prior to the commencement of the RVSA but it is unclear on how this will be resolved. HVIA is expecting that this will be an area that will be subject to further discussion in the next round of consultation meetings.

What are the grey areas?

The Department has indicated that there will be online proms and processes to support the application to Opt in, the recall process, the applications for concessional approvals and the SEVS register. At this stage there is no information available on these systems.

There is considerable uncertainty remaining over the concessional vehicle pathway and the Specialist and Enthusiast vehicles scheme.

There was considerable discussion over the eligibility criteria and the responsibilities of people importing vehicles under the concessional arrangements. There was discussion on how to resolve the issues around ensuring that vehicles imported under the concessional schemes comply with the requirements of things like VSB6 and Occupational Health and Safety requirement. There was also discussion of the responsibilities for suppliers of vehicles under the concessional schemes in relation to recalls and ongoing customer support.

It is expected that the next round of discussion papers and consultation forums will provide additional information on CRNs, SARNs, Testing facilities, the concessional pathway and the SEVs scheme. It is likely that the discussion papers will be issued in around February and the consultation forums will happen in March.

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