There’s loads to find out about heavy vehicles carrying abnormal loads

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There’s loads to find out about heavy vehicles carrying abnormal loads

In South Africa, when it comes to heavy vehicles carrying abnormal loads, there is loads to find out about laws and regulations.  It is vital for everyone’s safety to comply with such regulations.   Accordingly, there are a number of important rules that all transport companies as well as private vehicles need to adhere to where safety is concerned.  Abnormal loads carried by heavy vehicles can be classified in numerous ways.

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Dangerous goods

Loading of dangerous goods is the responsibility of the consignor and when it comes to the driving of the vehicle that carries such goods, the responsibility falls to the driver whereas off-loading is the responsibility of the consignee.

Of note, the supervision of loading, transportation and off-loading of dangerous goods is carried out in accordance with the relevant national legislation and with specific reference to the Occupational Health and Safety Act (OHS).

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Heavy loads

The Road Transport Management System (RTMS) ensures that all consignees, consignors and transport operators engage in the road logistics value chain in order to implement a management system that sees to it that infrastructure is preserved, promotes improvement of road safety, and ensures that an increase in the productivity of the logistics chain is borne in mind at all times.  As dictated by the Road Traffic Act, a certain mass limit exists for certain vehicles.

Logistics companies and the rules of the road

Logistics companies, like any other road user, must comply with the rules of the road.  Even greater precautions need to be taken against accidents involving heavy vehicles as such can cause a greater degree of devastation.

It remains a general rule of the road that no person driving a vehicle on a public road should follow another vehicle more closely than is reasonable and prudent having regard to the speed of such other vehicle.  While the safe distance for regular vehicles is 3 seconds, a larger vehicle carrying an abnormal load would need to maintain a much larger gap between vehicles.

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