New rules in Western Australia will hold all parties in the supply chain accountable for mass, dimension and load restraint breaches.

The new chain of responsibility provisions have taken effect in WA, which also give authorities the power to take action against a number of responsible parties whenever an overloaded vehicle or illegally restrained load is detected.

It means all those responsible for loading the vehicle, scheduling deliveries, receiving freight or supplying a vehicle can be held liable.

WA authorities now require all parties to take “all reasonable steps” to prevent a breach.

The new chain of responsibility provisions apply to both light and heavy vehicles, meaning non-compliance issues could turn up outside of the trucking industry.

WA road transport authority Main Roads says the chain of responsibility rules were extended to light vehicles in order to gain the greatest road safety benefit.

“Drivers are still responsible for ensuring that the vehicle they are driving complies with all mass, dimension and loading requirements,” Main Roads said in a statement.

“However, under the new laws, other parties in the chain can also be held responsible.

“In the event of a breach, consignors, drivers, vehicle owners, loaders, packers, management and company directors may be held responsible under the legislation. Liability also extends to corporate bodies, unincorporated associations and partnerships.”