CoR Laws Reduce Risk for your Organization

Dec 27, 2017

New Chain of Responsibility laws are coming in mid 2018. Is your business ready? Are you ready? These reforms are a significant step forward in recognising that everyone in the supply chain has a role to play in ensuring heavy vehicle safety.

The reforms aim to complement heavy vehicle and national workplace safety laws, and place a positive duty of care on all heavy vehicle supply chain parties.

CoR laws:

  • Improve safety
  • Improve compliance
  • Require parties to manage risk
  • Create a level playing field and increase productivity
  • Protect infrastructure
  • Protect against the demands of off-road parties that can lead to breaches of the law


New primary duty in 2018

Under current CoR, all parties who have control or influence over the transport task are responsible for complying with and for breaches of these laws.

In mid 2018, HVNL will be amended to make it clear every party in the supply chain has a “duty” to ensure safe practices, rather than being deemed liable for breaches detected.

CoR requirements and legal responsibilities will now also extend to heavy vehicle standards and maintenance, and the liability of executive officers will broaden to require due diligence for safety across the entire HVNL.

This approach is like that of workplace health and safety laws and will be a significant step towards improving safety in the transport industry. It will also help to minimise regulatory burden by applying the same regime to transport operations.


Risk-based approach gives flexibility

Because the new CoR laws focus on managing risk, they will give you more flexibility to install measures tailored specifically to your business to prevent breaches of transport law.

This means, as a party in the chain, you can proactively reduce risks related to your transport tasks, rather than reacting when there’s a possible breach of the law.

It is also important to perform risk assessments on all supply chain activities to ensure safety.


Primary duty – the new CoR principle

The basis for the new law is the establishment of a positive duty: an obligation to eliminate and minimise public risks by doing everything reasonable to ensure transport-related activities are safe.

This means that all parties must actively prevent breaches and eliminate any arrangement that may cause or encourage another to break the law.

Executive officers will have a “due diligence” obligation to ensure parties in the chain of responsibility comply with their requirements under the law.

The list of parties in the chain of responsibility remains the same, so if you are a party in the transport supply chain you will have a duty to ensure safety. Sometimes you may have more than one duty at the same time.

The change is that you will only be accountable for the activities that you manage and control. A set of principles to guide application and interpretation of the duty of care will be included in the amendments to the law. It will also be broadened to include vehicle standards and maintenance.


How can you make sure your company is prepared?

Build systems that identify, assess and control risks

  • Assess and identify clearly the responsibilities of all parties in your supply chain under CoR
  • Develop systems to manage fatigue
  • Maintain your heavy vehicle
  • Check your vehicle dimensions and weights
  • Include compliance and assurance conditions in commercial arrangements
  • Seek legal advice on CoR obligations
  • Work with your supply chain partners to eliminate risks
  • Question requests that may cause breaches of the law.


Adopt better freight moving practices

  • Establish and adhere to safe policies, procedures and workplace practices
  • Ensure proper packing, placing and securing of loads
  • Adopt safer loading and unloading procedures
  • Ensure vehicles and drivers do not speed
  • Train staff and partners on their CoR obligations


With these changes, it’s essential for companies to be more proactive in managing risks to ensure safe transport operations.

BROWZ offers a prequalification and safety management system that makes assessing Chain of Responsibility Heavy Vehicle Transport Suppliers simple and streamlined.

With BROWZ, you can verify and ensure that suppliers are qualified with several key compliance/safety questions related to Heavy Vehicle National Law (HVNL). BROWZ makes it simple for suppliers to self-report with an online questionnaire as part of the registration process, making it easier for your company to identify, assess, evaluate, and control risk.

To learn more about the BROWZ Chain of Responsibility (CoR) assessment, contact BROWZ here