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Govt. education stance fails to provide customers with compliant products says industry CEO

May 27, 2015
Govt. education stance fails to provide customers with compliant products says industry CEO

Wade O'Leary, NRMA Advocacy and Community Content Manager says an incorrectly positioned number plate story posted to the NRMA Advocacy Blog page has been viewed more than 200,000 times

The manufacturer of a caravan that left a NRMA member with a large fine and a demerit points penalty for an incorrectly-positioned number plate is facing an audit on the back of a National Roads and Motorists Association (NRMA) investigation, he said.

He says there are national inconsistencies in caravan number plate placement regulations.

NRMA reports that: Caravan Industry Association of Australia chief executive Stuart Lamont told the NRMA that Crusader Caravans will be audited "in response to the article". .

"We are working closely with the national regulator to stamp out non-compliance across a range of areas: We have been talking to state government bodies about this but they have been going down the path of education rather than enforcement, which has failed", Stuart Lamont said.

Stuart Lamont pointed out the 1.3m height limit for number plates is enshrined in Australian Design Rule 61/02 (Vehicle Marking), sub-section 9.1.1.1.

But he said breaches regarding couplings, gas and electrical installations, so-called 'suicide doors' and various personal products imported through a self-declaration process could be regarded as more pressing matters for regulators to address.

"The broader issue here is how the product got through the registration process which you would expect would pull this issue up prior to the vehicle getting into the hands of the consumer?", he said.

"In this case, the policeman is quite right, most cops don't understand the rule or couldn't be bothered to enforce it".

"The construction of a caravan is subject to many regulations, yet the enforcement by Government remains difficult and is applied inconsistently", he said.

Editors Note: GSA agrees with a general need for all concerned to fully understand caravan towing compatibility issues. GSA thinks this involves a fully compliant industry and a need for caravan buyer education across brands of tow vehicles and caravans. GSA is dealing with a situation in which the top of the range Jeep Grand Cherokee is causing concerns when it is used for heavy towing at speeds over 80kmh. In another instance owner concerns involve suspension issues. It extends to rear tyres scrubbing out far too quickly. GSA believes that many dealers, across brands have staff training issues in matters related to the safe towing of heavy caravans. Here are hyperlinks to Information Articles in the GoSeeAustralia free library which relate to compliance issues.