When a person gets a bit overweight, nothing much happens. They’ll go on a diet, they’ll exercise and eventually they’ll shed a couple of kilos. They won’t be committing an offence or cop a fine as a result of that offence.
Unfortunately, the same can’t be said for when a truck is overweight. Exceeding the limits of how much a truck can legally carry is called a mass overload offence. If you’re in the transport industry, you’ll know that this is something you want to avoid at all cost. In this post, we tell you all about what happens when your truck is overweight and how improving your on-board weighing systems will save you from penalties.
Two types of weight limits
There are two types of mass limits that every truck must comply with:
- GVM – the gross (total) vehicle mass
- Axle mass – the mass carried on a certain axle
Even if your truck is under the GVM limit, if one of your axles exceeds its mass limit, you’re committing a mass overload offence.
Determining your vehicle’s mass limits
This will depend on the vehicle. Your vehicle’s mass limits are determined by a few different factors, like the type of vehicle, the recommendations of the manufacturer, the number of axles and the spacing between them.
Everyone involved in operating a heavy vehicle must know the vehicle’s mass limits. Should you be uncertain of your mass limits, seek clarity on this from the National Heavy Vehicle Regulator. The on-board weighing experts at Loadmass are also a wealth of knowledge and can prevent your truck from ever being overweight.
If your truck is overweight, it’s not just the driver against whom charges could be brought. The HVNL’s chain of responsibility indicates that employers, operators, consignors, packers, loaders and loading managers could all be liable for an overweight truck.
Mass overload offences can carry hefty fines. Monetary fines differ between the categories of Minor Risk, Substantial Risk and Severe Risk. The higher the risk, the bigger the fine.
How to avoid offences and penalties
So, how can you avoid offences and penalties? Consulting an on-board weighing solutions provider like Loadmass can ensure you never have to experience the headaches of committing a mass overload offence, and receiving a fine because of it. They’ll fit your truck with state-of-the-art scales that give you reliable and accurate measurements every day of the week. This will not only guarantee that your truck meets the mass limits, but will also improve the productivity of your transport operations. If you need to lose (truck) weight, get in touch with the team at Loadmass today!