New South Wales bus operators will be the big winners following the recent announcement by the NSW Government to increase weight limits for three-axle buses. Minister for Roads, Maritime and Freight Melinda Pavey said raising the gross mass limit for the buses from 20.5 to 22 tonnes would help bus operators improve efficiency.

“Today’s coaches carry a lot of extra equipment from wheelchair lifts to entertainment and toilet facilities which all add considerable weight to the vehicles.

“NSW bus operators will now be able apply for a permit for the increased 22-tonne mass limit to operate on our roads.”

A NSW Government review also found three-axle buses operating at 22 tonnes cause less road wear than two-axle buses operating at the maximum legal weight of 18 tonnes.

Parliamentary Secretary for the Illawarra and South Coast Gareth Ward said buses operating at the new weight limit would also improve safety.

“Buses operating at the new 22-tonne mass limit will also be safer as they will need to have anti-lock braking and electronic braking systems installed as well as electronic stability control to qualify for a permit,” Mr Ward said.

“The three-axle bus mass limits are also being reviewed by the National Transport Commission to work towards a consistent national approach.”

BusNSW Executive Director Matt Threlkeld said the new limits would particularly benefit long distance express coaches.

“Coaches are always picking up new passengers and luggage along their routes. The increased weight limits will give drivers the confidence to use the vehicle’s full seating capacity, meet safety standards and comply with the law,” Mr Threlkeld said.

Pictured: Minister for Roads, Maritime and Freight Melinda Pavey today was joined by Member for Kiama Gareth Ward, NSW Bus and Coach Association NSW and Premier Transport Group to announce increased weight limits for three-axle buses.