Victoria’s new HPFV networks for 30-metre A-doubles

VicRoads has introduced new High Productivity Freight Vehicle (HPFV) networks to accommodate 30-metre A-double combinations that have been approved under the Performance Based Standards (PBS) scheme. Increased demand for these combinations led to VicRoads developing the networks with the aim of providing a smoother path to road access, without the need for individual route assessments.

HPFV dimensions

VicRoads has developed three reference vehicle templates to represent vehicle dimensions eligible for the networks. These templates provide approved axle spacing ranges for A-double combinations up to 30 metres. The templates were developed with the goal of accommodating as many current vehicle designs as possible.

Each reference vehicle possesses slightly different dimension ranges for the trailers and drawbar. A vehicle must meet one of the reference vehicle templates to be eligible to operate on a network. Combinations that do not comply with these templates may require additional assessment by VicRoads. Only combinations with triaxle trailers and a tandem axle dolly are eligible. Details of all three reference vehicles can be seen below.

As well as meeting the dimensions detailed in the templates, vehicles seeking to operate on the HPFV A-double networks must also abide by the following dimension limits:

  • Maximum length – 30 metres
  • Maximum height – 4.3 metres
  • Maximum width – 2.5 metres

Reference vehicle 1

Reference vehicle 2

Reference vehicle 3

HPFV network information

The HPFV A-double networks are being developed with the aim of providing access to primary freight routes throughout Victoria. There are three HPFV A-double networks, each corresponding to a different reference vehicle. The routes included in each network are identical, and only the approved mass on critical bridges varies between the networks.

VicRoads will continually assess key freight routes to progressively expand the networks. Access to roads not currently shown on the maps, whether they are managed by VicRoads or local councils, may be requested and may be subject to route assessment by the relevant road manager.

The current network maps can be viewed here.

HPFV mass limits

Vehicles operating on the HPFV A-double networks may be loaded up to Higher Mass Limits (HML) axle loads giving an overall Gross Combination Mass (GCM) of up to 85.5 tonnes.

Operating at a GCM of 85.5 tonnes is not possible on large sections of the networks. This is due to certain bridges throughout the networks not being suitable for heavier vehicles. Each bridge that cannot support a GCM of 85.5 tonnes is labelled on the network maps and information is provided on the maximum GCM permitted. This information can be viewed by clicking on the red or orange dots that represent the restricting bridges.

As each reference vehicle has differing dimensions, each vehicle will have a different impact on bridges. This means that the maximum GCM permitted for a bridge can vary between the three networks. This is the reason why there are three different networks with identical routes.

Obtaining an HPFV permit

To operate on the HPFV A-double networks, a vehicle must possess a PBS Vehicle Approval. Using this Vehicle Approval, a permit can be obtained allowing the vehicle to operate on the relevant network. If access is required on roads not included within the network (i.e. first/last mile), it is possible to obtain advice in writing that access is possible before obtaining a Vehicle Approval. This is called PBS in-principle access support.

Heavy vehicles that exceed 26 metres in length require a special permit before they are permitted cross a rail level crossing. Prior to operating on the networks, a separate permit must also be obtained from the Over Dimension Load team from the Department of Economic Development, Jobs, Transport and Resources.

Contact us for more information on obtaining a PBS Vehicle Approval or PBS in-principle access support.

HPFV operating conditions

The following conditions apply to vehicles operating on the HPFV A-double networks:

  • Vehicles must satisfy Level 2 Performance Based Standards
  • A GPS device accredited under the Intelligent Access Program (IAP) must be fitted
  • A certified On Board Mass (OBM) system that can be integrated with IAP must be fitted
  • The vehicle must be accredited under the Mass Management module of the National Heavy Vehicle Accreditation Scheme
  • An anti-lock braking system must be fitted on all axles
  • Certified Road Friendly Suspension (RFS) must be fitted
  • The vehicle must not exceed a speed of 90 km/h or any lower speed limit applying to the route
  • The vehicle must display a “long vehicle” warning sign at the front and rear

Please contact Advantia for further information and advice on operating on the HPFV A-double networks.

Additional information can also be found on VicRoads’ HPFV A-double network fact sheet.