Transport and heavy vehicles

Grain Producers SA has compiled the relevant legislation, codes and guidelines that affect grain producers in transporting grain and moving agricultural machinery as well as the licences and documentation required for these activities.

Transporting grain

Fatigue management and work diary requirements

In October 2015, the National Heavy Vehicle Regulator (NHVR) updated requirements around fatigue management for farmers and the National Work Diary exemption. The NHVR has information on its website and has developed fact sheets to help growers’ understand what is involved.

When travelling from home base under standard driving hours the National Driver Work Diary is not compulsory, however it is recommended to record travel. View the guideline form to use​.

View the Fatigue Management for Farmers – Guidance Sheet
View frequently asked questions about the National Work Diary Exemption – Primary Production
Visit the NHVR website

For information on grain delivery to receivers sites go to:

Regulations on agricultural vehicles

Drivers of agricultural vehicles, or operators transporting agricultural vehicles, must comply with the relevant gazette notices, codes of practice, and guidelines.

Mass overloading tolerance for grain

The National Heavy Vehicle Regulator has information on the South Australia Heavy Vehicle Farm Gate Grain Transport Mass Exemption Notice 2020 (No.1).

View the NHVR information sheet.

Grain Carriers Code of Conduct

Grain Trade Australia (GTA) has developed the Grain Transport Code of Practice (Transport Code) as an important tool to assist Australian Grain Industry (industry) participants who transport grain in bulk and in containers to do so efficiently, safely and within the relevant laws.

View the Grain Transport Code of Practice

Oversize or overmass vehicles and loads

State based notices covering the operation of heavy vehicle access including have been replaced with National and State notices made under the Heavy Vehicle National Law (HVNL). Read more.

Heavy vehicle routes using RAVnet

RAVnet is an interactive online map system that displays approved heavy vehicle route networks in South Australia through the Department for Planning, Transport and Infrastructure. Restrictions associated with specific route networks are also included.

Visit the RAVnet Online Map website.

‘Avoid a downhill disaster’ – Rule 108

For public safety, truck drivers must follow Australian Road Rule 108 when descending on a steep road. This law means that when you are driving a truck or a bus on a road with the sign “trucks and buses must use low gear”, you must drive in a gear that is low enough to limit the speed of your vehicle without using the foot brake.

Download the DPTI Rule 108 brochure.

National Agricultural Notice Operator’s Guide

The National Class 1 Agricultural Vehicle and Combination Mass and Dimension Exemption Notice Operator’s Guide is the latest in the NHVR’s online operator’s guides for national road access notices.

Incorporating feedback from key industry stakeholders, this mobile-responsive, electronic version has replaced the previous PDF version – but it can still be printed if operators want to carry a paper copy in their trucks.

A key difference from the previous PDF version is that the Operator’s Guide now includes the South Australian night travel conditions that were previously outlined separately in the Department of Infrastructure and Transport’s Night Travel for Agricultural Machinery and Night Travel for Rubber Tracked Tractors information bulletins, as well as the network conditions included in the Limited Access Locations in SA information bulletin. This eliminates the need for operators to cross-reference two websites.

Also, a further benefit of this consolidation has been that the NHVR has worked with South Australian road managers who hadn’t consented to night travel by every eligible vehicle and combination type under the Notice to extend their consent to incorporate all of these.

Licences and documentation

Primary producer registration concession

Primary producers registering a goods-carrying vehicle utilising the concessions under the Motor Vehicles Act Section 34 must only use that vehicle for their own primary production and not for contracting, sub-contracting or for other trades or businesses.

The NHVR has released a Registration Checker App which allows anyone to check the registration status of a heavy vehicle. More information on how to use the app is available in this NHVR video.

Penalties apply for those who operate vehicles outside of the conditions stipulated under the primary producer concession.

More information about primary producer concession and how you can apply is available on the SA Government website.

Operate agricultural machinery without a HR licence

A farmer’s immediate family members and employees who hold a class C (car) licence can be issued with a restricted licence to drive heavy tractors and other farm machinery over 4.5 tonnes without the need to undertake a practical driving test and obtain a heavy vehicle licence.  

Applications must be in writing and these applications are processed at a Service SA Customer Service Centre. The licence holder’s name and address, date of birth, licence details and a statement that the person is required to drive these vehicles in the operation of the farming property should be included in the application.  

Download the application.

Upgrade a truck licence for primary producers

Primary producers can apply for consideration to be given to an immediate family member who requires a higher class of licence to drive a family farm vehicle to transport produce to a silo or other destination. However because of age or driving experience, they do not qualify for the appropriate licence class.

Complete the MR33 Restricted Licence Application

Visit the DPTI My Licence site for more information on Heavy Rigid or Heavy Combination class licences.

Changes to Restricted Access Vehicle documentation

New compliance and enforcement laws saw changes to what documents must be carried in a restricted access vehicle. For more information visit the NHVR website.

New South Australian Heavy Vehicle Notices – Agricultural Vehicle driven on roads

The South Australia Class 1 Agricultural Vehicle Mass and Dimension Exemption Notice 2019 has been re-drafted to ensure consistency with Heavy Vehicle National Law to ensure access for vehicles operating under the notice continues for the SA road network.

Changes of note include