What did they mean?
Some correspondence, from the Gauteng Provincial authority, regarding the National Road Traffic Act, created confusion as it was rather unclear what was meant. The Road Freight Association (RFA) sheds some light on the matter, as it called an urgent meeting with the author to provide clarification on the correspondence, should further action (of whatever nature) be required.
The following context, grammar and spelling have not been altered in any manner or form:
“a) Any vehicle which does not comply with in the NRTA (legal) shall be enter to the AV sequence and registered as an abnormal vehicle: ie: semitrailers, telescopic (extendables) which the wheel base is open more than 10 000mm to 14 500 mm, or other vehicles like Pacific and Ultra Pacific horses, mobile cranes : truck mounted or all teraain, concrette pumps etc.
b) For this case: if a semi trailer will be couple to a truck tractor and the total leng will exceed the 18 500 mm, this articulated vehicle shall be enter to the AVGP system as abnormal articulated vehicle,
c) Does not matter if the vehicle will operated empty or loaded meaning, the articulated vehicle if is in excess of the above, these shall be sequence and lately AVGP registered.
d) Exempting permit as per any request this office will check up against the legal matters of the vehicle and the articulated vehicles; if the vehicle is out of the legal limits, these are need to be captured, entered and registered within the AVGP data base system, these can not be excluded especially when the vehicle is build structurally as and abnormal.
e) No matter if the articulated vehicles in future will convey mass or perhpas dimensions only, the applications need to be checkup against the registration database.
Any enquire fel free to contact this office.
Jf Heedia (Pr. Eng.)”
This was clarified at the RFA’s meeting, with each of the following paragraphs explaining the corresponding notation from the Gauteng Provincial authority:
a) Vehicles that are outside of the prescribed limits of the National Road Traffic Act, Act 93 of 1996 (NRTA), do not comply with the requirements for dimensions, or axle(s), or other mass load limits and, therefore, cannot be operated legally on public roads in South Africa.
These must, therefore, be sequence registered (where a sequence number, which identifies a specific vehicle or component, is entered in the Register of Abnormal Vehicles by the Provincial Authorities), as these vehicles will require exemption from the particular aspect of non-compliance with the NRTA, to be operated on a public road. These vehicles will, as a result, have to comply with all of the TRH11 prescripts applicable to abnormal vehicles (AVs) and Principle Approval will be required for these vehicles.
b) Where an articulated motor vehicle exceeds the overall length of 18 500 mm, as prescribed in the NRTA, each component – the truck tractor and semi-trailer – will have to be sequence registered. It is possible that the individual components may be compliant when viewed in isolation – in which instance Principle Approval will not be required – however, when coupled, the combination exceeds the overall length regulation.
This does not infer that the Provincial Administration will condone the combination of unsuitable vehicles, to enable illegal articulated motor vehicles to be used on public roads.
It is important to note that if such a combination is sequenced and AV registered (where a AV number is allocated to a vehicle, or combination, that has been entered in a Register of Abnormal Vehicles – approved by the Provincial Authorities), the articulated motor vehicle – which, by virtue of its excessive length, cannot be operated legally on a public road – will require exemption permits and will be bound by the TRH11 prescripts applicable to abnormal vehicles.
c) The vehicles referred to under (a) and (b) are abnormal in terms of dimension and will always be operated under permit, be it laden or unladen.
d) When considering applications for dimensional loads, conveyed on vehicles that are not AV sequenced, the Gauteng authorities will exercise due diligence and ensure that the vehicles, used in the combination, are in fact legal dimension vehicles that do not require sequence registration. They will issue permits for the movement of dimensional loads subject to the usual considerations.
Where a vehicle is used, which is not compliant with the limits imposed by the NRTA, it must first be sequence registered, however, to allow it to obtain exemption, because the vehicle would otherwise not be able to operate on a public road.
Mass loads in excess of the limits in the NRTA have to be conveyed on AV sequence and registered vehicles. This requirement will apply to applications for exemption in Gauteng, regardless of the province where the applicant vehicle(s) are registered.
e) In all instances where an exemption permit is required, Gauteng officials will check the vehicle registration data to ensure that vehicles, which do not meet the limits imposed by the NRTA, are first sequence registered so that exemption can be granted to the vehicles.
The RFA summarises this mouthful as follows:
– Abnormal vehicles that are AV registered combinations, transporting dimensional and mass loads in Gauteng, will not be affected.
- Street legal vehicles and combinations conveying dimensional loads will not be affected.
– Abnormal vehicles that are not AV registered will not be permitted to obtain exemption permits for dimensional loads (or mass loads as is the case currently) until the abnormal vehicle is first sequence registered, so that it, too, may be operated legally on a public road under a exemption permit, with and without a load.