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Prime Mover Magazine

NatRoad provides input into heavy vehicle rest areas

The National Road Transport Association (NatRoad) has been working with Austroads to update the guidelines on rest area facilities to ensure heavy vehicle drivers have access to appropriate rest stops and facilities throughout their journey. 

From the start of 2018, NatRoad has taken a strong stand and spoken with local governments about the lack of rest area facilities and the active discouragement of heavy vehicle access and parking.

NatRoad said in a statement that it encourages all local towns and communities to provide rest stop facilities. “This can be useful for truck drivers, particularly where toilets, showers, fuel and food are available in the one location. Importantly, where the rest area is in a town, we suggested that information on suitable parking areas for heavy vehicles needs to be publicly available.”

According to NatRoad, where the local government supports hosting the rest area in the town, the availability, location of Heavy Vehicle Rest Areas (HVRAs) and the facilities provided must be sign-posted and communicated to drivers in the same way as roadside HVRAs.

“Where using a town as a rest facility is not supported by the local government, road managers should place a HVRA on the approach or departure side of the town to fulfil the desired HVRA spacing along the freight route,” said NatRoad.

“Heavy vehicle drivers should be encouraged to use these facilities as opposed to the town. We also suggested the town should not be mentioned when referring to HVRAs to avoid drivers thinking that it provides a HVRA opportunity.

“Consideration should also be given to the impacts of bypasses and whether drivers will drive through the centre of the town, or bypass it and how this might affect the opportunity for the driver to take a rest stop.”

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