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Heavy and large vehicles

This explains the laws that apply specifically to large and heavy vehicles like large trucks and commercial buses.

A heavy vehicle is a truck, commercial bus or other vehicle that has a gross vehicle mass of 4.5 tonnes. It includes a trailer that is attached to a large vehicle even if this trailer weighs less than 4.5 tonnes.

Maximum speed

The maximum speed for buses over 5 tonnes (or other vehicles over 12 tonnes) is 100 km/h. So a sign that permits some vehicles to travel at speeds over 100km/h does not apply to these large vehicles.

See Rule 21(2)—Road Safety Road Rules 2017 (Vic)(opens in a new window).

Excessive speed offence for heavy vehicles

The maximum penalty for speeding by heavy vehicles has increased.

Penalty

A driver who is caught exceeding the speed limit by 35 km/h or more may be fined up to 30 penalty units.

Infringement penalty

The penalty depends on how much over the speed limit the vehicle was travelling. If the vehicle was exceeding the speed limit by:

  • less than 10 km/h—1.75 penalty units
  • 45 km/h or more—11.5 penalty units

Note: The penalties are higher (may be up to 20 penalty units) for a body corporate.

See Schedule 7—Road Safety (General) Regulations 2019 (Vic)(opens in a new window).

More information

Legislation

Road Safety Act 1986 (Vic)

  • s. 3—defines bus, heavy vehicle, GVM (gross vehicle mass) & GCM (gross combination mass)
  • s. 21(2) maximum of 100km/ hour
  • s. 65B—penalty for heavy vehicles that exceed the speed limit by 35km/hour or more
  • Part 12—intelligent access program for heavy vehicles to allow capture and monitoring of data in relation to location, speed and frequency of trips

See Road Safety Act 1986 (Vic)(opens in a new window).

Road Safety (General) Regulations 2019 (Vic)

  • Schedule 7—lists the infringement notices that apply to heavy vehicles that are speeding

See Road Safety (General) Regulations 2019 (Vic)(opens in a new window).

Road Safety Road Rules 2017 (Vic)

  • r. 20—creates an offence and sets penalty for speeding heavy vehicles who exceed the speed limit by less than 35 km/h
  • r.21(2)—sets the speed limit at 100 km/hour for large and heavy vehicles

See Road Safety Road Rules 2017 (Vic)(opens in a new window).

References

VicRoads

The VicRoads site has information for truck drivers.

See VicRoads—Trucks(opens in a new window).

National Transport Commission

This site has more detailed information about changes that regulate the speed of heavy vehicles.

See 'Heavy vehicles' 'Rules and compliance' in National Transport Commission Australia(opens in a new window).

Updated