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Prime Mover Magazine

NHVR releases industry guide for B-double car carriers

Amendments coming 1 July will allow a prime mover in a 26-metre B-double combination that is carrying, or built to carry vehicles, to have have deck fitted over the top, according to the National Heavy Vehicle Regulator (NHVR).

NHVR document Vehicle Standards Guide 23 (VSG-23) provides advice to the heavy vehicle industry about changes that will be made to the requirements for a combination that is a B-double and is fitted with two decks for carrying vehicles.

According to the document, 25-metre B-double car carriers are permitted to have a car carrying frame fitted above the prime mover’s cabin, however, prime movers used in B-double combinations that measured 26 metres were not previously permitted to have an area built to carry goods.

As per B-double prime mover requirements, not all B-double rated prime movers can be used in a 26-metre B-double combination. The Regulation requires the prime mover to be fitted with: a front underpin protection device that complies with UN ECE Regulation No. 93 or ADR 84-Front Underrun Impact Protection; a cabin that complies with UN ECE Regulation No. 29. These requirements will continue to apply to vehicles used as car carriers.

A deck fitted to the top of the prime mover combined with the load must not reportedly cause the prime mover to exceed regulated steer axle limits. The steer axle limit on vehicles used in a B-double combination is 6-tonne, unless the vehicle is a complying steer axle vehicle.

The document confirms that the axle mass limit on a complying steer axle vehicle is 6.5-tonne, where a complying steer axle vehicle must have all of the following: an engine complying with the emission control requirements contained in ADR 80/01 (Euro VI engine) or a later version of ADR 80; appropriately rated tyres, axle and suspension to permit 6.5-tonne on the steer axle; and a gross vehicle mass (GVM) of 15-tonne or more.

The document also details requirements for approved modifications and complying with the national heavy vehicle safety standards.

In other news, a national mass increase for two-axle buses and twin steer tri-axle semi-trailer combinations will be among a number of changes to the Heavy Vehicle National Law and regulations starting 1 July.

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