Elected members of the Mid Murray Council were presented with the Network Level Heavy Vehicle Route Assessment and Risk Analysis report from HDS Australia by Managing Director John Olsen during last month’s council meeting.
The report is the result from an investigation into the safety aspects of gazetted B-Double General Mass Limit (GML) routes, B-Double Commodity routes and other potential B-Double routes within the Mid Murray Council region.
A B-Double is a vehicle combination made up of a prime mover towing two semi-trailers and must either reach 4.3 metres in height, a gross mass of 42.5 tonnes and/or be of an overall length of 19 metres.
B-Doubles can only travel on approved route networks which have been specified on the Department for Transport, Energy and Infrastructure online mapping system.
The assessment aimed to determine the overall risk along each road link which was categorised as low, moderate, high or very high in accordance with accepted heavy vehicle route assessment criteria.
MMC currently has a network of gazetted B-Double GML routes and a small network of gazetted B-Double Commodity routes, including a number of local roads which have the potential to be considered for use by B-Doubles.
The report will be used to leverage any possible future funding for renewal and upgrading of the council’s road network.
Of the roads assessed 21 sites within the recorded GML routes and two within the Commodity routes have been declared as P1 indicating their status as “very high risk” for a B-Double vehicle.
A further 19 GML routes and one commodity route have been assessed as P2 or “high risk”.
It was stated in the report continuing gazettal of GML or commodity routes of P1 status is not recommended, unless council demonstrates that it is economically important to retain the gazetted route and has scheduled treatment to lower the residual risk to a preferred status of “moderate”.
The Gazette Notice for National Class 2 Heavy Vehicle B-Double Authorisation (NOTICE) 2014 (No.2) can be found at www.nhvr.gov.au/files/c2014g00268-national-class-2-b-double-authorisation.pdf.
The information guide for B-Doubles can be accessed at www.nhvr.gov.au/files/t124-sa-information-guide-for-b-doubles.pdf.