Decision to Mandate ESC Will Save Lives

fatal crashes are down for trucks

The latest amendment to the truck and trailer braking ADRs has been welcomed by stakeholder reckoning the decision to mandate ESC will save lives. ADR 35/06 for trucks and 38/05 for trailers will mandate Electronic Stability Control (ESC) for new heavy vehicle trailers from July 2019 and for selected new heavy trucks and buses from November 2020.

According to the Department of Infrastructure, Regional Development and Cities, approximately 20 per cent of deaths in accidents involving trucks can be linked to rollovers or loss of control. By this token changing the ADRs should save 126 lives and reduce the number of serious injuries by more than 1,000.

The new requirement will apply to selected categories of new model heavy trucks from November 1 2020, and all new trucks in those categories from November 1 2022. The requirement will apply to all new model heavy trailers weighing more than 10 tonnes from July 1 2019 and all new heavy trailers weighing more than 10 tonnes from November 1 2019.

The decision by the Federal Department has been a long time coming and many industry bodies have been calling for the mandating of these kinds of technologies for some time.


decision to mandate ESC will save lives


“Stability control is a vehicle safety system that monitors the stability and sideways acceleration of a heavy vehicle and kicks in to brake the vehicle if it detects a rollover starting,” said Geoff Crouch, Australian Trucking Association Chair. “The ATA lobbied hard to extend the original proposal that the Infrastructure Department released for consultation.

“As a result of lobbying from the ATA and other stakeholders, the final design rules extend the mandate to include short wheel base rigid trucks weighing more than 12 tonnes. This decision is projected to save another two lives over the years and prevent an extra 17 serious injuries compared to the original proposal.

“I want to thank the Government and the responsible minister, Paul Fletcher, for listening to the industry’s views. I also want to thank the expert members of the ATA’s Safety Committee, led by Tim Knowles, and our Industry Technical Council, led by Kel Baxter, who developed the ATA’s position on the issue.”


decision to mandate ESC will save lives


New road train converter dollies will be exempt from the stability control requirement, because of issues with the technology in the rough conditions encountered by road trains in rural and remote areas. Non-standard low loaders will also be exempt.

The new ADRs can be found on the Federal Register of Legislation at ADR 35/06 and ADR 38/05, including the final Regulation Impact Statement (RIS)